Published: Sat, January 11, 2020
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

Study examines opioid involvement in United States drug overdoses

Study examines opioid involvement in United States drug overdoses

A new study published on Wednesday found that alcohol-related deaths in the United States have more than doubled within the past 20 years.

Women-perhaps dispirited by society-are reportedly hitting the sauce more often: Alcohol-related deaths escalated among females (85 percent) over males (35 percent) between 1999 and 2017. Also, in 2017, nearly 75% of overdose deaths involving cocaine and half involving psychostimulants involved at least one opioid.

Approximately half of the deaths were from liver disease or overdoses, study says. Among the best will increase had been discovered amongst ladies and individuals who have been center-aged and older. About 17% were overdoses involving alcohol, per the study.

Researchers with the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism looked at death certificate data.

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Rates are highest among older men, specifically in the 45-74 age range.

"Women are at greater risk than men at comparable levels of alcohol exposure for alcohol-related cardiovascular diseases, certain cancers, alcohol-related liver disease and acute liver failure due to excessive drinking", study authors Aaron M. White, I‐Jen P. Castle, Ralph W. Hingson and Patricia A. Powell wrote.

The death toll is likely higher than what researchers discovered because only one in six drunk driving deaths reported as alcohol-related, according to the researchers.

According to the study, 70.1 percent of the U.S. population ages 18 and older, about 173.3 million people, consumed alcohol in 2017. A study past year found that rising healthcare costs, along with lack of access to medical care, were a driving force in these "deaths of despair". Per capita consumption is up about 8% since the turn of this century and binge drinking numbers increased about 7.7%. Alcohol-related hospitalizations increased 51.4% between 2000 and 2015. Blame also rests with the alcoholic beverage industry, which is dominated by a small number of conglomerates that promote their products through pervasive advertisements while reaping billions of dollars in profits, with scant attention paid to the potential harms to public health.

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