Anesthesia & Analgesia

Skip Navigation LinksHome > April 2009 - Volume 108 - Issue 4 > Death from Propofol: Accident, Suicide, or Murder?
Anesthesia & Analgesia:
doi: 10.1213/ane.0b013e318198d45e
Anesthetic Pharmacology: Case Report

Death from Propofol: Accident, Suicide, or Murder?

Kirby, Robert R. MD*; Colaw, James M. JD†; Douglas, Michael M. BA Criminal Justice‡

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A 24-yr-old woman was found dead in her home from apparent propofol “toxicity.” Her blood level of propofol was 4.3 μg/mL. She had no history of drug abuse and no evidence of such behavior at autopsy. The medical examiner and police investigators felt that she died from probable homicide. Attention was focused on a male registered nurse acquaintance, who had acquired propofol and other drugs in the course of his regular duties in a surgical intensive care unit. This is the first reported case of murder with propofol.

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