How does Lady Macbeth ultimately pay the price for her involvement in murder in the play Macbeth?

Expert Answers
Kristen Lentz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

You could definitely make an argument that her guilt in participating in Duncan's murder overwhelms her by the end of the play.  In Act 5, the audience sees a Lady Macbeth who is completely transformed from the strong, vibrant woman they saw in earlier acts; now Lady Macbeth seems plagued by her own delusions.  The Gentlewoman keeping watch over her confides in the doctor:

I would not have such a heart in my bosom
for the dignity of the whole body. (V.i.49-50)

Lady Macbeth's heart and mind are greatly troubled, as evidenced by her frantic washing of her hands, an attempt to remove imagined blood.  After observing her, the doctor is at a total loss to make a diagnosis.  Her case is so extreme and deranged that she is beyond his care.  In the end, Lady Macbeth's guilt over her involvement in the crimes committed prove her undoing; she suffers greatly for her wrong-doing, ultimately paying for her actions with her life.