Of Postmortem Chemical Data

The most important changes of body-fluid components after death are compiled in Table 11-1. A synopsis of postmortem chemical findings in diseases such as diabetes mellitus is shown in Table 11-2. The tables show that glucose is best determined in vitreous because blood glucose values may increase dramatically in the agonal period, particularly after resuscitation attempts (1). Hyperglycemia and diabetic ketoacidosis can be diagnosed readily but hypoglycemia cannot be confirmed by postmortem testing. The dehydration pattern (Table 11-2) has provided a compelling basis for the diagnosis of dehydration in cases of homicidal deprivation of food and water.

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