More Substance Abuse Related ER Visits: Facts and Statistics

Welcome back. We are here with more facts and statistics that talk about the high volume of ER visits that are related to substance abuse. If you missed our previous blog, visit back.

Facts and Statistics | Drug Rehab Charlotte NC

Below, you'll find facts and statistics from

  • In 2009, DAWN estimated 519,650 ED visits related to the use of alcohol in combination with other drugs. Alcohol was most frequently combined with— central nervous system agents (e.g., analgesics, stimulants, sedatives) (229,230 visits), cocaine (152,631 visits), marijuana (125,438 visits), psychotherapeutic agents (e.g., antidepressants and antipsychotics) (44,217 visits) and heroin (43,110 visits).
  • While alcohol use is illegal for individuals under age 21, DAWN estimates that in 2009 there were 199,429 alcohol-related ED visits among individuals under age 21; 76,918 ED visits were reported among those aged 12 to 17, and 120,853 alcohol-related ED visits were reported among those aged 18 to 20.
  • In 2009, 1.2 million ED visits involved the nonmedical use of pharmaceuticals or dietary supplements.
  • The most frequently reported drugs in the nonmedical use category of ED visits were opiate/opioid analgesics, present in 50 percent of nonmedical-use ED visits; and psychotherapeutic agents, (commonly used to treat anxiety and sleep disorders), present in more than one-third of nonmedical ED visits.
  • Included among the most frequently reported opioids were single-ingredient formulations (e.g., oxycodone) and combination forms (e.g., hydrocodone with acetaminophen).
  • Methadone, together with single-ingredient and combination forms of oxycodone and hydrocodone, was also included under the most frequently reported opioids classification— hydrocodone (alone or in combination) in 104,490 ED visits, oxycodone (alone or in combination) in 175,949 ED visits and methadone in 70,637 ED visits.
  • The total number of drug-related ED visits increased 81 percent from 2004 (2.5 million) to 2009 (4.6 million).
  • ED visits involving nonmedical use of pharmaceuticals increased 98.4 percent over the same period, from 627,291 visits to 1,244,679.
  • The largest pharmaceutical increases were observed for oxycodone products (242.2 percent increase), alprazolam (148.3 percent increase), and hydrocodone products (124.5 percent).
  • Among ED visits involving illicit drugs, only those involving ecstasy increased more than 100 percent from 2004 to 2009 (123.2 percent increase).
  • For patients aged 20 or younger, ED visits resulting from nonmedical use of pharmaceuticals increased 45.4 percent between 2004 and 2009 (116,644 and 169,589 visits, respectively).
  • Among patients aged 21 or older, there was an increase of 111.0 percent.
  • ED visits involving adverse reactions to pharmaceuticals increased 82.9 percent between 2005 and 2009, from 1,250,377 visits to 2,287,273.
  • The majority of adverse reaction visits were made by patients 21 or older, particularly among patients 65 or older; the rate increased 89.2 percent from 2005 to 2009 among this age group.

Legacy Freedom | Drug Rehab in Charlotte NC

Do you think your teen son or daughter is suffering from an addiction and aren’t sure where to turn next? Regardless of how bad your drug or alcohol use has become, help is always available. You’re not alone in this. Recovery is just a phone call or visit away. Contact Legacy Freedom to learn about drug rehab in Charlotte NC and our highly successful outpatient therapy. We are here to help you get back on track to a healthier, happier life.

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