Gamma-hydroxybutyrate concentrations in the blood of impaired drivers, users of illicit drugs, and medical examiner cases
2007 (English)In: Journal of Analytical Toxicology, ISSN 0146-4760, Vol. 31, no 9, 566-572 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) was determined in blood samples from impaired drivers, people arrested for petty drug offenses (non-traffic cases), and GHB-related deaths. The method of analysis involved conversion of GHB into gamma-butyrolactone and determination of the latter by gas chromatography with a flame ionization detector, and with gamma-valerolactone as the internal standard. The mean and median concentrations of GHB in blood from impaired drivers (N = 473) were 90 and 84 mg/L, respectively, and offenders were predominantly men (96%) with an average age of 26 year (range 15-50 year). In 185 cases, GHB was the only drug present in blood at mean and median concentrations of 92 and 86 mg/L, respectively. People arrested for petty drug offenses (N = 1061) had slightly higher GHB concentrations in their blood: median 118 mg/L for men and 111 mg/L for women. In GHB-related deaths (N = 33), the mean and median concentrations were considerably higher: 307 mg/L and 190 mg/L, respectively, and the highest was 2200 mg/L. The typical signs of drug influence noted by the arresting police officers included sedation, agitation, slurred speech, irrational behaviour, jerky movements, and spitting. The short elimination half-life of GHB means that the concentrations in blood decrease rapidly and are probably a lot lower than at the time of driving, which was 30-90 min earlier.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 31, no 9, 566-572 p.
National CategoryMedical and Health Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-40727Local ID: 54002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-40727DiVA: diva2:261576