Vortioxetine is an antidepressant recently licensed in the US and EU for the treatment of major depressive disorder. No fatalities from vortioxetine overdose have been reported, yet. Two cases of attempted suicide are described in the literature, although no toxicological analyzes were conducted. Vortioxetine concentrations found in blood and organs in a case of a probable acute lethal intoxication are reported here. A 65-year-old woman was found on the floor behind her bed with no vital signs. The woman was recently on vortioxetine 10 mg/day for major depression, anxiety, and psychotic attacks. Vortioxetine was quantified in blood, brain, liver, kidney, and lung samples by LC-MS/MS. Vortioxetine concentrations were: 1.197 ng/ml in the blood, 804 ng/g in the brain, 8.992 ng/g in the lung, 1.389 ng/g in the liver, 292 in the kidney. No other substance was found. In the case reported here, the blood concentration was approximately 35–135 times higher than the antemortem therapeutic value. Histological examination showed signs of a probable sudden cardiac death following to arrhythmia, with no evidence of myocardial infarction. The present case indicate that blood concentrations close to 1,000 ng/mL could lead to death, involving probably to a cardiac toxicity.

Lethal vortioxetine poisoning? A forensic investigation

Zuccarello P.
Primo
Conceptualization
;
Carnazza G.
Formal Analysis
;
Barbera N.
Ultimo
Conceptualization
2023-01-01

Abstract

Vortioxetine is an antidepressant recently licensed in the US and EU for the treatment of major depressive disorder. No fatalities from vortioxetine overdose have been reported, yet. Two cases of attempted suicide are described in the literature, although no toxicological analyzes were conducted. Vortioxetine concentrations found in blood and organs in a case of a probable acute lethal intoxication are reported here. A 65-year-old woman was found on the floor behind her bed with no vital signs. The woman was recently on vortioxetine 10 mg/day for major depression, anxiety, and psychotic attacks. Vortioxetine was quantified in blood, brain, liver, kidney, and lung samples by LC-MS/MS. Vortioxetine concentrations were: 1.197 ng/ml in the blood, 804 ng/g in the brain, 8.992 ng/g in the lung, 1.389 ng/g in the liver, 292 in the kidney. No other substance was found. In the case reported here, the blood concentration was approximately 35–135 times higher than the antemortem therapeutic value. Histological examination showed signs of a probable sudden cardiac death following to arrhythmia, with no evidence of myocardial infarction. The present case indicate that blood concentrations close to 1,000 ng/mL could lead to death, involving probably to a cardiac toxicity.
2023
rrhythmia; Autopsy; Forensic; Lethal overdose; Suicide; Vortioxetine
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
Lethal vortioxetine poisoning.pdf

accesso aperto

Tipologia: Versione Editoriale (PDF)
Licenza: Creative commons
Dimensione 7.33 MB
Formato Adobe PDF
7.33 MB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/601149
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 0
  • Scopus 0
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 0
social impact