Ecstasy (MDMA) deaths in New York City:
a case series and review of the literature

Gill JR, Hayes JA, deSouza IS, Marker E, Stajic M.
New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner
Department of Forensic Medicine,
The New York University School of Medicine, 10016, USA.
J Forensic Sci 2002 Jan;47(1):121-6


MDMA ("ecstasy") has gained renewed popularity as a drug of abuse. To access the epidemiology and causes of death of MDMA-positive fatalities, all deaths investigated by the OCME that tested positive for MDMA (22 deaths) between January 1997 and June 2000 were reviewed. There were three deaths in each 1997 and 1998, eleven in 1999, and five in the first part of 2000. Of these 22 deaths, 13 were due to acute drug intoxications, 7 due to mechanical injury (blunt trauma, gunshot wounds), and 2 due to a combination of natural disease and acute drug intoxication. Evidence of recent opiate and/or cocaine use was found in 7 of the acute intoxication deaths and in none of the traumatic or combination natural/intoxication deaths. The race of all decedents was White between the ages of 17-41 years, and 18 of 22 were men.

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