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Article Dans Une Revue International Journal of Legal Medicine Année : 2021

Involuntary 5f-adb-related intoxication following e-cigarette use


The detection of synthetic cannabinoid (SC) intoxication cases is challenging, even more when the involved SC identification is requested in a forensic context. This situation can be complicated by new modes of SC consumption, non-specific symptomatology, and analytical pitfalls. To illustrate these issues, we report the case of a 16-year-old man who presented symptoms evocating of a seizure disorder in the minutes following the use of a friend's e-cigarette. At admission in the emergency department, his electroencephalogram was interpreted as coherent with a recent seizure episode. 5F-ADB, a third generation SC, was detected in the e-liquid and in an early collected (H2 after the e-cigarette use) serum sample (0.50 µg/L), but not in urine samples (H18 and H38). One 5F-ADB metabolite, O-desmethyl-5F-ADB (M5), was detectable in urine up to at least 38 h after intoxication. Neither 5F-ADB nor its metabolites could be detected in victim's hair sampled 3 months after the intoxication. Although leading to a non-specific symptomatology, acute SC intoxication should be considered when the case history is related to e-cigarette or e-liquid use. Early biological samples are recommended, even if analytical screening can be positive for SC metabolites in urine sampled until 2 days after exposure. Accordingly, data from the literature and the present case underscore the relevance of adding both main 5F-ADB metabolites (M5 and 5-OH-pentyl-ADB) to mass spectrum databases used for toxicological screening in order to reduce the risk of false-negative results in intoxication cases involving 5F-ADB.
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Dates et versions

hal-03759608 , version 1 (24-08-2022)



Sophie Salle, Christelle Sevestre, Camille Richeval, Florian Hakim, Delphine Allorge, et al.. Involuntary 5f-adb-related intoxication following e-cigarette use. International Journal of Legal Medicine, 2021, International journal of legal medicine, 135 (4), pp.1467-1470. ⟨10.1007/s00414-021-02561-8⟩. ⟨hal-03759608⟩


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