Volume 26, Issue 3 (July 1981)
Narcotic-Related Deaths in the District of Columbia: 1971–1979
Two hundred eighty-seven deaths directly related to narcotic abuse occurred in the District of Columbia between July 1971 and December 1979. Factors contributing to death in some cases included lack of opiate tolerance as well as the conjoint abuse of ethanol. Free morphine was identified more often in the blood of victims dying rapidly than in the blood of those with longer post-injection survival. A statistically significant correlation between the number of heroin-related fatalities and the purity of heroin available to the user was observed over the 8½-year study period.