SOFT - TIAFT 1998 Poster Session 3 Thursday October 8, 1998

Claus Dragsholt1, Karen Worm2, Kirsten W. Simonsen1, Birgitte Kringsholm2

1. Institute of Forensic Medicine, Finsensgade 15, DK-8000 Aarhus C
2. Institute of Forensic Medicine, Frederik V's Vej, DK-2100 Copenhagen Ø, Denmark

Citalopram belongs to the second generation of antidepressants and was registered in Denmark in 1989. Citalopram is marketed under the following tradenames: Cipramil®, Seropram®, Cipram®. It is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) without cardiovascular adverse effects. Only little information on citalopram in forensic cases exists in the literature and as citalopram is manufactured by a Danish company we found it of interest to make a survey on the occurrence of citalopram in medico legal cases in Denmark with a population of 5.2 million.

The survey includes all medico legal cases involving citalopram examined in Denmark during the period 1989-1997. Citalopram was involved in 86 cases. We have tried to make an interpretation of the citalopram concentrations found in this investigation. We suggest the following levels for letal, toxic and therapeutic concentrations. Letal: 2.0- 6.2 mg/kg; Toxic: 0.4-0.9 mg/kg; Therapeutic: 0.03-0.6 mg/kg. In the suicide cases in which only citalopram was found, the blood concentrations were 10 times higher than therapeutic concentrations. This indicates that citalopram possesses a low toxicity range when used correctly.

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