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American Journal of Forensic Medicine & Pathology:
Case Report

A Suicide Using a Homemade Carbon Monoxide “Death Machine”

Prahlow, Joseph A. MD*; Doyle, Barrett W.†

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Abstract

Deaths related to carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning are common. Most represent accidents and suicides, and most result from CO production via the incomplete combustion of carbon-containing substances. Suicide via CO toxicity is not uncommon and typically involves the use of motor-vehicle exhaust as a source of CO. Presented herein is a case of suicidal CO poisoning in which the CO was produced via a chemical reaction between formic acid and sulfuric acid within a homemade device.

© 2005 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

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