April 9, 2012

Hydrocodone, Oxycodone on the Rise

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Oklahoma’s prescription painkiller statistics mirror national trends, which shows that hyrdrocodone and oxycodone are the two painkillers that factor into more overdose deaths in the U.S. than other medications.

Distribution of the two drugs has drastically increased in specific regions across the U.S. Appalachia and the Midwest have seen distribution increases of hydrocodone, the main ingredient in Vicodin, Lortab and Norco, and sales of oxycodone, found in OxyContin, Percocet and Percodan, have increased almost sixteenfold in some locations, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration.

In 2010, hydrocodone was a factor in 153 overdose deaths in Oklahoma, followed by oxycodone at 144 deaths, according to the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control.

Sources: Associated Press via Albany Times Union and Oklahoma Watch