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Death from analgesic overdose, including oxycodone and codeine, is more concentrated in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods with fragmented families than other types of deaths from unintentional causes, according to new research from the American Journal of Public Health. Yet, compared to heroin overdose deaths, analgesic overdoses were found to occur in higher-income neighborhoods.
Researchers analyzed data from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of New York City, to understand the role of neighborhood characteristics, including income distribution, quality of built environment and family fragmentation, in analgesic overdose deaths. Analgesic overdose fatalities were compared against heroin overdoses and non-overdose accidental deaths, which included instances like drownings, poisonings, falls and other accidents.
Results from the study found that while analgesic overdose deaths were more associated with economic disadvantaged neighborhoods, they still occurred in higher income, less fragmented and less unequal neighborhoods than heroin overdose deaths. Family fragmentation, which includes high divorce prevalence of single-parent homes in the neighborhood, was also associated with analgesic overdose deaths.
"Given the increasing rates of analgesic overdose fatalities and the systematic distribution of overdose risk across urban neighborhoods, there is a critical need for research that identifies the particular neighborhood mechanisms that may distinguish the risk of analgesic overdose from that of illicit drug overdose," the researchers suggest.
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Click 'references' tab above for source.
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American Public Health Association. "Death from drugs like oxycodone linked to economically disadvantaged neighborhoods, family fragmentation." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 17 Oct. 2013. Web.
11 Dec. 2013. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/267428>
American Public Health Association. (2013, October 17). "Death from drugs like oxycodone linked to economically disadvantaged neighborhoods, family fragmentation." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
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