Thursday, 27 November 2014

Prescription painkiller Oxycodone blamed for more than 600 Australian deaths in recent years

Dr Jennifer Pilgrim from the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine has spoken about her research in deaths involving Oxycodone in an article featured in The Herald Sun.

According to the article, Oxycodone, a popular prescription painkiller contributed to the deaths of more than 600 Australians in recent years. Research from VIFM revealed that the number of deaths involving Oxycodone increased from 21 in 2001 to 139 in 2011. Victoria had the highest number of deaths between that period at 268.

Most of those who died were taking the drug for chronic pain, but some had been prescribed it inappropriately for migraines, headaches and arthritis.

Dr Jennifer Pilgrim, said most of the deceased were not trying to get high, but relieve their pain.

“We found a mixture of misuse of Oxycodone and misprescribing,” Dr Pilgrim said.

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