Chloride Test Gettler Test

Chloride and sodium levels in the left heart, compared with the right side or the femoral vein, decrease in freshwater drowning and increase in saltwater drowning (6,8,148). In practice, the results have been equivocal and not useful, because significant electrolyte changes, particularly in freshwater drownings, do not usually occur (80). Studies of other electrolytes have also yielded inconsistent results (150).

Diatom Drowning
Fig. 11. Examples of various diatom species viewed with phase-contrast microscopy. Original magnification x250. (Courtesy of Dr. M. Pollanen, Forensic Pathology Unit, Toronto, Canada.)

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