Journal Published Online: 01 May 2000
Volume 45, Issue 3

Ketamine in Non-Hospital and Hospital Deaths in New York City



We reviewed all ketamine-positive deaths (87) examined at the New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner over a two-year period (1997 to 1999). There were 15 non-hospital deaths with 12 due to acute multidrug intoxications, one due to sarcoidosis, and two due to physical injury (blunt and thermal). In no instance was a fatal intoxication caused exclusively by ketamine. Opiates (10/15), followed by amphetamines (7/15) and cocaine (6/15), were the most frequent co-intoxicants. Ethanol was found in only one death. The race of all decedents was white and the majority were men (11/15) between the ages of 18 and 30 years. The remaining 72 instances of positive ketamine findings were hospital deaths following surgical procedures or burns.

Author Information

Gill, JR
New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY
Stajíc, M
New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY
Pages: 4
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Stock #: JFS14742J
ISSN: 0022-1198
DOI: 10.1520/JFS14742J