The act of suffocating, or the state of being suffocated; death caused by smothering or choking.

The term suffocation is sometimes employed synonymously with asphyxia. In the strict medico-legal sense it signifies asphyxia induced by obstruction of the respiration otherwise than by direct pressure on the neck (hanging, strangulation) or submersion (drowning).

Origin: L. Suffocatio: cf. F. Suffocation.

(01 Mar 1998)

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