New study suggests opioid and non-opioid drugs may work similarly to reduce pain

(KFVS) - The opioid crisis in the United States has taken over the national dialogue with the number of overdose deaths involving prescription opioids quadrupling since 1999.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 15,000 people died from drug overdoses that involved prescription opioids in 2015.

According to a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, some over the counter drugs may actually work just as well as opioids.

The study suggests that when patients who were studied received treatments with opioids and non-opioid painkillers, there were no "statistically significant or clinically important differences in pain reduction at two hours."

The most commonly overdosed opioids are methadone, oxycodone, and hydrocodone, according to the CDC.

When it comes to overdose deaths, between 1999 and 2014, overdoses were highest among people aged 25 to 54 years.

Additionally, the CDC said those rates were higher among non-Hispanic whites and Native Americans compared to non-Hispanic blacks and Hispanics.

The CDC also says over 1,000 people are treated in emergency rooms across the country each day due to misusing prescription opioids.

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