A comprehensive approach to the analysis for many drugs in postmortem blood and biological fluids using high-performance liquid chromatography and diode array detection has been developed. To reduce the likelihood of co-eluting interference components of postmortem blood or other drugs, selective back-extraction was also used to screen and quantitate drugs in blood and biofluids. An isocratic mobile phase (acetonitrile, phosphoric acid and triethylamine buffer, pH 3.4) was developed and found stable, reliable and convenient for general drug screening and quantitation. A library of drug spectra in the ultraviolet wavelength range (210-367 nm) was established for 272 drugs on two reversed-phase columns: Supelcosil (biphenyl) and LiChrospher RP-8. The application of several methods to whole blood, the analysis of complex cases and the use of multicomponent analysis for qualitative and quantitative analysis is discussed.