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Opioid-Related Mortality in US by Opioid Type

JAMA Netw Open; 2019 Feb 22; Kiang, et al

Driven by the use of synthetic opioids, opioid-related mortality has rapidly increased in the eastern US, a new study found. Researchers conducted a cross-sectional study to assess changes in the geographical distribution of opioid-related mortality across the US by opioid type from 1999‒2016. They found:

  • During the study period, a total of 231,264 men and 120,366 women died from opioid-related causes across the entire US.
  • Opioid-related mortality rates, especially from synthetic opioids, rapidly increased in all of the eastern US.
  • The age-standardized mortality rate from opioids increased more than 2-fold every 2 years in 24 eastern states.
  • The life expectancy lost at age 15 from opioids is now greater than that lost from deaths due to firearms or motor vehicle crashes in most of the US.

Citation:

Kiang MV, Basu S, Chen J, Alexander MJ. Assessment of changes in the geographical distribution of opioid-related mortality across the United States by opioid type, 1999-2016. JAMA Netw Open. 2019;2(2):e190040. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2019.0040.

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