We report the case of a man who died twelve hours after ingesting powdered iboga root, commonly taken for its stimulant and hallucinogenic properties. Ibogaine and ibogamine were quantified in the powder ingested and the victim's body fluids by GC-MS/MS after liquid-liquid extraction (Toxi-tubes A(®)). The concentrations of ibogaine measured in the blood samples taken at the scene and in the peripheral blood, urine, and gastric fluid samples taken during the autopsy were 0.65, 1.27, 1.7, and 53.5 μg/mL, while the iboga content in the powder was 7.2%. Moreover, systematic toxicological analyses of biological samples showed the presence of diazepam and methadone in therapeutic concentrations. Death was attributed to the ingestion of a substantial quantity of iboga in the context of simultaneous methadone and diazepam consumption.
Keywords: Tabernanthe iboga; forensic science; forensic toxicology; gas chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry; ibogaine; ibogamine; poisoning.
© 2013 American Academy of Forensic Sciences.