To illustrate the usefulness of imaging in people suspected of body packing or body stuffing by police. In this poster we review our experience about patients carrying illegally packets of drug within their bodies,
in order to assess the correct radiological management for non compliant patients in case of ingestion or introduction of foreign bodies containing illicit and life-threatening drugs. The aim is to improve imaging protocols both for providing a reliable proof of criminal behavior...
Methods and Materials
Twenty-three people suspected to be body-packers were taken to our Department of Radiology by police officers with the order of the judge to investigate if they were carrying intraabdominal packets of drug.
Nineteen of them were male (fifteen/19 Caucasian and four/19 African) aged from 21 to 37 and four of them were Caucasian not pregnant female aged from 29 to 33.
None of them was asked an informed consent.
All patients underwent plain abdominal radiographs in first instance,
Eighteen/23 suspected body-packers or body-stuffers were found positive on plain abdominal radiographs,
three/23 negative and two/23 equivocal.
CT examination was performed in case of negative or equivocal x-ray (five/23) and in further six/23 to better characterize and localize the foreign bodies,
using the following windowing parameters in addition to those commonly used for abdominal CT: level -150~ -300,
width 600 ~800.
CT was found positive in all cases (nive/9),
even in case of previous...
Still nowadays the plain abdominal x-ray remains a valid radiological screening technique to perform in first instance in the suspicion of body-packing and body-stuffing,
thanks to its high sensitivity.
the improvements made by traffickers in drug composition and packing materialmay often result in negative x-ray.
since a negative or equivocal plain abdominal x-ray does not exclude anymore the diagnosis of body-packing,
in case of strong suspicion CT may be very helpful,
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"Drug mules" as a radiological challenge: Sensitivity and specificity in identifying internal cocaine in body packers,
body pushers and body stuffers by computed tomography,
plain radiography and Lodox. Eur J Radiol. 2011 Dec 15. Beauverd Y , Poletti PA ,...