Traumatic Blood Loss

The loss of blood with respect to the results of evidentiary blood testing are impacted upon many ways, these include:

  1. Trauma decreases gastric emptying which prolongs the pre-absorption state.
  2. Blood loss whether internal or external, into a sequester area, of the body or otherwise will reduce the total blood volume. Therefore any alcohol still present in the stomach, a pre-absorptive state would be absorbed into a smaller volume of blood leading to a higher BAC on laboratory analysis.
  3. Blood loss will be replaced by interstitial fluids. These interstitial fluids have a higher water content than blood, and therefore would contain a higher concentration of alcohol than whole blood, so laboratory results would reveal an erroneously elevated BAL.
  4. Trauma would activate the coagulation scheme to limit blood loss. Activation of the coagulation scheme depletes the blood of clotting factors and related proteins. This decrease in clotting factors and related proteins results in a higher water concentration in the remaining blood. This higher water concentration leads to an erroneously elevated whole blood alcohol level result on a laboratory analysis.