Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: Prescription Drugs Kill 300% More Americans Than Illegal Drugs

  1. #1
    Funding Member
    "Friend of Germanics"
    Skadi Funding Member

    Ulf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Last Online
    Saturday, June 12th, 2010 @ 08:23 PM
    Ethnicity
    Deitsch
    Gender
    Posts
    775
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts

    Prescription Drugs Kill 300% More Americans Than Illegal Drugs

    A report by the Florida Medical Examiners Commission has concluded that prescription drugs have outstripped illegal drugs as a cause of death.

    An analysis of 168,900 autopsies conducted in Florida in 2007 found that three times as many people were killed by legal drugs as by cocaine, heroin and all methamphetamines put together. According to state law enforcement officials, this is a sign of a burgeoning prescription drug abuse problem.

    "The abuse has reached epidemic proportions," said Lisa McElhaney, a sergeant in the pharmaceutical drug diversion unit of the Broward County Sheriff's Office. "It's just explosive."

    In 2007, cocaine was responsible for 843 deaths, heroin for 121, methamphetamines for 25 and marijuana for zero, for a total of 989 deaths. In contrast, 2,328 people were killed by opioid painkillers, including Vicodin and Oxycontin, and 743 were killed by drugs containing benzodiazepine, including the depressants Valium and Xanax.

    Alcohol directly caused 466 deaths, but was found in the bodies of 4,179 cadavers in all.

    While the number of dead bodies containing heroin jumped 14 percent from the prior year, to a total of 110, the number of deaths influenced by the painkiller oxycodone increased by 36 percent, to a total of 1,253.

    Across the country, prescription drugs have become an increasingly popular alternative to the more difficult to acquire illegal drugs. Even as illegal drug use among teenagers have fallen, prescription drug abuse has increased. For example, while 4 percent of U.S. 12th graders were using Oxycontin in 2002, by 2005 that number had increased to 5.5 percent.

    It's not hard for teens to come by prescription drugs, according to Sgt. Tracy Busby, supervisor of the Calaveras County, Calif., Sheriff's Office narcotics unit.

    "You go to every medicine cabinet in the county, and I bet you're going to find some sort of prescription medicine in 95 percent of them," he said.

    Adults can acquire prescriptions by faking injuries, or by visiting multiple doctors and pharmacies for the same health complaint. Some people get more drugs than they expect to need, then sell the extras.

    "You have health care providers involved, you have doctor shoppers, and then there are crimes like robbing drug shipments," said Jeff Beasley of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. "There is a multitude of ways to get these drugs, and that's what makes things complicated."

    And while some people may believe that the medicines' legality makes them less dangerous than illegal drugs, Tuolumne County, Calif., Sheriff's Office Deputy Dan Crow warns that this is not the case. Because everybody reacts differently to foreign chemicals, there is no way of predicting the exact response anyone will have to a given dosage. That is why prescription drugs are supposed to be taken under a doctor's supervision.

    "All this stuff is poison," Crow said. "Your body will fight all of this stuff."
    Tuolumne County Health Officer Todd Stolp agreed. A prescription drug taken recreationally is "much like a firearm in the hands of someone who's not trained to use them," he said.

    While anyone taking a prescription medicine runs a risk of negative effects, the drugs are even more dangerous when abused. For example, many painkillers are designed to have a delayed effect that fades out over time. This can lead recreational users to take more drugs before the old ones are out of their system, placing them at risk of an overdose. Likewise, the common practice of grinding pills up causes a large dose of drugs to hit the body all at once, with potentially dangerous consequences.

    "A medication that was meant to be distributed over 24 hours has immediate effect," Stolp said.

    Even more dangerous is the trend of mixing drugs with alcohol, which, like most popularly abused drugs, is a depressant.

    "In the case of alcohol and drugs, one plus one equals more than two," said Tuolumne County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Lt. Dan Bressler.

    Florida pays careful attention to drug-related deaths, and as such has significantly better data on the problem than any other state. But a recent study conducted by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) suggests that the problem is indeed national. According to the DEA, the number of people abusing prescription drugs in the United States has jumped 80 percent in six years to seven million, or more than those abusing cocaine, Ecstasy, heroin, hallucinogens an inhalants put together.

    Not surprisingly, there has been a corresponding increase in deaths. According to the Drug Abuse Warning Network, the number of emergency room visits related to painkillers has increased by 153 percent since 1995. And a 2007 report by the Justice Department National Intelligence Drug Center found that deaths related to the opioid methadone jumped from 786 in 1999 to 3,849 in 2004 - an increase of 390 percent.

    Many experts attribute the trend to the increasing popularity among doctors of prescribing painkillers, combined with a leap in direct-to-consumer marketing by drug companies. For example, promotional spending on Oxycontin increased threefold between 1996 and 2001, to $30 million per year.

    Sonora, Calif., pharmacist Eddie Howard reports that he's seen painkiller prescriptions jump dramatically in the last five years.

    "I don't know that there is that much pain out there to demand such an increase," he said.
    The trend concerns Howard, and he tries to keep an eye out for patients who are coming in too frequently. But he admits that there is little he can do about the problem.

    "When you have a lot of people waiting for prescriptions, it's hard to find time to play detective," he said.

    Still, the situation makes Howard uncomfortable.

    "It almost makes me a legalized drug dealer, and that's not a good position to be in," he said.

    Source

  2. #2
    Senior Member Luthienne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Last Online
    Saturday, November 22nd, 2008 @ 05:44 AM
    Ethnicity
    German
    Country
    Germany Germany
    State
    Berlin Berlin
    Gender
    Age
    33
    Occupation
    Student
    Politics
    Right-Wing
    Religion
    Neo-Völkisch
    Posts
    35
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts
    Here is very difficult for a doctor to give easy prescriptions or regular people to buy drugs, painkillers etcetera. I believe for this to be a good thing if I read articles like this.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Patrioten's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Last Online
    Thursday, September 19th, 2019 @ 04:32 AM
    Ethnicity
    Swedish
    Country
    Sweden Sweden
    Gender
    Politics
    Conservative
    Religion
    Protestant
    Posts
    1,919
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    2
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    5
    Thanked in
    5 Posts
    Correct me if I'm wrong but I have this image of prescription drugs being eaten like candy in America, figuratively speaking. Every family stocking up on drugs and having a drug-cabinet sort of thing. The strongest drug that can be found in my house is a weaker Swedish, over-the-counter version of aspirin, and we're not exactly big consumers of it.

    Drugs made by pharmaceutical companies can have basically the same effects and side-effects that illegal drugs have, and so it's no surprise to see numbers like this. It's obviously to do with accessability. If it was the other way around, if illegal drugs were administered in the same scale, legally, as legal drugs are today, I think the statistics would be rather similar (but worse for some drugs of course). As good a reason as any to not legalize any drugs that are now illegal, but rather restrict access to the ones that are legal and try and get the people off of their legal addiction to prescription drugs.

  4. #4
    Renewed
    "Friend of Germanics"
    Skadi Funding Member

    QuietWind's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Last Online
    @
    Ethnicity
    German-American
    Country
    United States United States
    Gender
    Family
    Jaded
    Posts
    2,191
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    5
    Thanked in
    5 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Patrioten
    Correct me if I'm wrong but I have this image of prescription drugs being eaten like candy in America, figuratively speaking. Every family stocking up on drugs and having a drug-cabinet sort of thing.
    That is a pretty accurate description of many homes in America. Although, one reason they stockpile is also from not being taken, and the excess are still kept around "just in case."

    In America, if something is something is wrong, then there is a pill for it. Even if nothing is wrong, but you think something might be wrong, there are pills for it. Pharmaceutical companies make big money off of creating new concoctions. Along these same lines, more and more drugs are becoming "over the counter" to where you can buy them without a prescription. I can remember when a lot of the current over-the-counter drugs were only given by prescription many years ago.

    Several months ago they were trying to decide what to do about the fact that young kids were dying from taking cough medicine (through accidental overdoses). Their solution? They changed the "ages" on the packaging.

    I read an article a few weeks back that talked about the reasons so many teens are abusing prescription drugs. Among the reasons, their availability was listed. Another reason listed is that teens are not being educated about the dangers. Some teens have parties where they all bring prescription drugs, put them all in a bowl, and then everyone just takes from the bowl.
    Last edited by QuietWind; Thursday, November 13th, 2008 at 03:00 PM. Reason: Finishing my post since I have returned....
    "I do not know what horrified me most at that time: the economic misery of my companions, their moral and ethical coarseness, or the low level of their intellectual development." Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

  5. #5
    Senior Member Mrs. Lyfing's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Last Online
    Sunday, March 21st, 2010 @ 11:21 PM
    Ethnicity
    Old Stock American
    Subrace
    Bruenn
    Country
    Confederate States Confederate States
    State
    Alabama Alabama
    Location
    Where the mountains are
    Gender
    Age
    38
    Family
    I Love Him!
    Occupation
    Women-ness.
    Politics
    Liberal/Traditional
    Religion
    Spiritual
    Posts
    1,276
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    1
    Thanked in
    1 Post
    This reminds me of something I saw the other day about how easy it had become for people to become pharmacists, and how many of them were in it just to steel the drugs and sell them on the street. Some pills sell for 50 bucks a pop. < But, seriously.

    It is a very big problem in America. Most are addicted to pain pills. Not just popping them, after a person pops so many it looses affect so they crush and snort the pills or shoot them up. Which will also lead to other drug use like heroine. Its got to be a very sad way to live.
    "We've become a nation of strangers. There seems to be very little in common to bond us to our fellow Americans outside of our immediate families,some don't even have that to fall back on."

  6. #6
    Senior Member The Dragonslayer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Last Online
    Monday, June 15th, 2009 @ 04:31 PM
    Ethnicity
    English, Scot-Irish, German, Dutch, Italian
    Country
    United States United States
    State
    North Carolina North Carolina
    Gender
    Family
    Single adult
    Occupation
    Janitor
    Politics
    Paleoconservative
    Religion
    Christian
    Posts
    106
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts
    Here in the United States, there seems to be a pill for everything. Even if you aren't sick, there's a pill for that too. You are bound to see countless commercials throughout the day advertising some sort of drug. Of course, they all have all sorts of side effects. Americans are doped up on medicine.

  7. #7
    Awaiting Email Confirmation
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Last Online
    Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011 @ 01:26 AM
    Ethnicity
    English
    Country
    England England
    Gender
    Age
    30
    Posts
    227
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts
    I'm sure this statistic comes about because of the fact more people take prescription drugs, and for drug abusers they are easier to aquire.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 0
    Last Post: Saturday, June 26th, 2010, 09:06 AM
  2. Prescription and Non-Prescription Drugs
    By Boche in forum Health, Fitness & Nutrition
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: Saturday, June 14th, 2008, 08:49 AM
  3. Illegal Aliens Kill More Americans Than Iraq War
    By Haldís in forum The United States
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: Sunday, March 4th, 2007, 09:00 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •