1 in 5 deaths among US adults age 24-35 involved opioids in 2016, study shows — 4 major takeaways

Practice Management

In 2016, 20 percent of deaths among all adults between 24 and 35 years old involved opioids, according to a study in JAMA Network Open.

Here are four things to know:

1. This serial cross-sectional study found that in 2001, 1 in 255 deaths were opioid-related, rising to 1 in 65 deaths by 2016; in other words, the percentage of all U.S. deaths attributable to opioids increased 292 percent between 2001 and 2016.

2. Deaths attributable to opioids rose 754 percent among adults aged 55 to 64 years, and increased 635 percent among those aged 65 years and older.

3. In 2016, 18.4 percent of 42,245 opioid-related deaths in the U.S. occurred among those aged 55 years and older.

4. Opioid-related deaths do not represent a large proportion of deaths among adults over aged 55 years, but the authors suggest the relative increase may be indicative of an aging population with an increasing prevalence of opioid use disorder.

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