Unintentional Deaths from Oxycodone Reach Epidemic Proportions

Death from Drugs

The explosive growth of strong opiate pain relievers has reached a fever pitch. Synthetic or partially synthetic pain relievers include oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, hydromorphone, morphine and other opioids. These are certainly the most effective pain relieving medications available, but they are all highly addictive and can be deadly when misused.

In the US, treatment admissions of people abusing prescription opioids quadrupled from 1998 to 2008, and accidental drug overdoses were the most common cause of accidental deaths, followed by road traffic accidents in 2009. This was the first year that showed that 37,485 people died of drug-related causes, usually overdoses, while 36,284 died in traffic crashes according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These signs have led the CDC to label opioid abuse as an epidemic. One of the most popular opioids of abuse is oxycodone, also known as OxyContin.

One sad example that illustrates how dangerous it can be to abuse oxycodone is that of a young San Diego State University student who was found dead the morning after a fraternity party. The 20-year-old student died of acute intoxication from oxycodone and alprazolam (brand name Xanax - an anti-anxiety medication), according to the medical examiner. The young man and his cousin had attended the fraternity party. In the morning, he was found dead.

Another sad story is that of a mother, Linda Watson, who knew as she watched her daughter sink deeper and deeper into drug dependency and addiction to pain pills, that one day she may have to confront her worst nightmare. She found her daughter's lifeless body in the bathroom one day, after a fatal overdose. This was a result of losing her several years-long battle of addiction to oxycodone.

In fact, unintentional drug overdose deaths have steadily climbed since 1970 to 27,658 such deaths in 2007. In fact, in 2007, there were nearly two times the number of unintentional opioid analgesic overdose deaths as the number from cocaine overdoses and more than five times the number of deaths which involved heroin.

Dozens of different formulations of oxycodone exist from different manufacturers. It is best known as OxyContin, but Percodan, Percocet, Roxicodone and Roxicets are also well-known forms of this drug. Drug companies such as Purdue Pharma have made their version of oxycodone, OxyContin, harder to sniff or inject by changing its consistency to a more gel-like compound. But, when these drugs become harder to abuse, those addicted to them will most likely switch to other drugs such as heroin, which can often be found easily and cheaply.

Opioid Addiction as Hard to Break as Heroin Addiction

Addiction to an opiate, even a partially synthetic one, is much like heroin addiction, and the habit is as hard to kick as a heroin habit. One must be supervised as there are strong cravings and serious withdrawal symptoms if one just stops taking these drugs. But there is hope for all addicts, even those who are addicted to opioids.

Narconon Program Helps Opioid Addicts to Successfully Kick the Habit

Narconon has been helping addicts to any drugs and alcohol to get sober and drug-free for more than 45 years. Started in 1966 by William Benitez in an Arizona State prison, this program has grown to more than fifty locations around the globe. Real help is available at Narconon drug and rehabilitation centers from Taiwan to Russia and from South America to Australia and in many locations in the US. One can enter a Narconon center and within four to five months can eliminate the cravings for more drugs as well as handle the issues of guilt and depression that also go along with drug addiction.

Rid Drug Cravings

Seven of ten Narconon graduates go on to remain drug-free and sober after finishing the program. This is one of the highest sobriety achievement rates of any drug rehab program.

Find out more about the full eight-step. Call a drug rehab represenative today.


  • http://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/prescription-medications
  • http://www.drugabuse.gov/es/node/4255
  • http://www.cdc.gov/HomeandRecreationalSafety/pdf/poison-issue-brief.pdf
  • http://oas.samhsa.gov/2k10/230/230PainRelvr2k10Web.pdf
  • http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/08/san-diego-state-student-died-overdose.html
  • http://www.foxnews.com/topics/health/oxycodone.htm
  • http://jacksonville.com/news/2010-09-24/story/cure-pain-was-soon-chain

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