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When Healing Drugs Harm

An increasing number of people die from unintentional home injury, in large part due to accidental drug overdose.

Older adults and infants have the highest rates of death from unintentional home injury. More than 30,000 such deaths occurred between 2000 and 2008.

Researcher Carol W. Runyan says, "Falls continue to be the major source of fatal home injury in older adults and suffocation the leading cause for infants. The increases in poisoning, largely due to prescription pain medication, have been most dramatic over the past decade, signaling a need to rethink how pain medications are prescribed and used.

Researcher Karen Mack says, "These injuries are predictable and preventable."

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