Accidental Prescription Drug Deaths Spike Upward
September 22, 2009
The mortality rate from unintended injury in the U.S. rose 11 percent between 1999 and 2005. The jumps in poisoning deaths and deaths from falls were particularly high and troubling.
Overall, 89 percent of the total increase in unintentional injury deaths was due to poisoning among those 15 to 64 years old and falls among those 45 and older, which increased by about 11,200 and 6,600, respectively.
While the cause behind the increase in mortality from falls is as yet unknown, it appears that the increase in poisonings is largely due to prescription drugs. Other studies have also found alarming increases in prescription drug overdoses, and prescriptions for antidepressants, in particular, have soared.