Prescription Drug Abuse in Ohio

Prescription drug abuse is a serious and growing problem in the state of Ohio. The number of fatal unintentional drug overdoses resulting from prescription drug abuse has skyrocketed in the state over the last decade. The Ohio Substance Abuse Monitoring Network has found that Percocet and Vicodin remain the most popular form of prescription drugs in terms of widespread use. OxyContin has decreased in both use and availability as a result of its new abuse deterrent formulation, but Opana has taken its place as a substitute in almost every region of Ohio, except Columbus and Toledo.

The overwhelming quantity of drugs prescribed has contributed to the epidemic. In 2010, over 776 million doses of opiates were prescribed in Ohio. That equals 67 doses for every man, woman, and child in the state. Use in southern Ohio was even higher. For example, in Scioto County, 9.7 million doses of prescription painkillers were prescribed in 2010, the equivalent of 123 doses for each of the 79,000 men, women, and children in the county. This was nearly twice as much as the average state level.

From 2000 to 2008, the rate of fatal unintentional drug overdoses increased 372 percent from 1.9 to 15.44 deaths per 100,000. This increase has been driven largely by the overwhelming growth of prescription drug abuse. On average, four people died each day due to unintentional drug overdose from 2006 to 2009. Of Ohio's 1,423 fatal drug overdoses in 2009, prescription opioids were involved in almost four in ten - more than heroin and cocaine combined. The opioids most associated with overdose are methadone, hydrocodone, oxycodone, and fentanyl.

For every one death, there are 10 treatment admissions, 32 emergency department visits, 130 people who abuse or are dependent, and 825 nonmedical users. On average from 2007-09, there were more than five inpatient hospitalizations each day in Ohio for unintentional drug overdoses, amounting to more than 6,700/year. More than four out of 10 (43 percent) of these were related to opioids (prescription and heroin). At least one-fourth were related to prescription opioids. On average from 2007-09, there were 19 Emergency Department visits each day in Ohio for unintentional drug overdose, amounting to nearly 2,000 per year. At least one in five (19 percent) of these are related to opioids (prescription and heroin).

If you or a loved one is suffering from prescription drug addiction, get help today by contacting one of our certified consultants. A Center for Addiction Recovery is a private facility that provides medically supervised detoxification for prescription drugs and other substances and offers comprehensive addiction treatment programs for any kind of addiction or loss of self worth.

We hope our website,, will be supportive and helpful to all who are experiencing the pain and devastation of prescription drug addiction.

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