Overdose Deaths from Fentanyl Mixed with Stimulants Have Alarmingly Increased Since 2010, Study Finds

Overdose deaths from fentanyl mixed with stimulants have increased more than 14,550 percent since 2010, a new study found.

Earlier this week, a peer-reviewed journal Addiction published a study detailing that 235 deaths were caused by a combination of drugs in 2010, compared to 34,429 deaths occurring in 2021.

The researchers found that the drugs commonly used with fentanyl changed over time and varied by region. In the northeastern United States, fentanyl was most often combined with cocaine, the study says, while in the southern and western United States it was most often combined with methamphetamine

The study also found that ethnic and racial minorities were disproportionately affected by overdose deaths, including blacks and Native Americans.

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How fentanyl became one of the biggest causes of drug overdoses in the US

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Lead study author Joseph Friedman said in a press release that the mixture of fentanyl and stimulants is the “dominant force” in the overdose epidemic.

“We are now seeing the use of fentanyl along with stimulants quickly becoming a dominant force in America’s overdose crisis,” he said. “Fentanyl has caused a multi-substance overdose crisis, meaning people are mixing fentanyl with other drugs, such as stimulants, but also countless other synthetic substances.”

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Friedman also noted that the mix of substances now presents new challenges for healthcare providers.

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“We have data and medical expertise on the treatment of opioid dependence disorders, but relatively little experience with the combination of opioids and stimulants together or opioids mixed with other drugs,” he explained. “This makes it difficult to medically stabilize people who are withdrawing from multiple substance use.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, contact the SAMHSA Addiction Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.

Categories: Trends
Source: HIS Education

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