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Treatment for Prescription Drug Addiction and Painkiller Abuse has Risen Sharply Since Onset of Financial Crisis, Reflecting Uncertainty About Economy

Wed, 02/09/2011 - 10:36am
Bio-Medicine.Org

MALIBU, Calif., Feb. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The 2007 onset of the financial crisis that upended the U.S. economy and impacted global markets correlated closely with unprecedented numbers of patients seeking treatment for prescription drug addiction and painkiller abuse, according to leading rehabilitation center Cliffside Malibu. The Cliffside Index, the percentage of patients admitted for treatment related to those medications, rose over 60 percent between 2007 and 2008, and has continued to increase each year.

Beginning in 2007, a growing number of patients began expressing heightened states of uncontrollable anxiety about the economy, reported the physicians and other mental and physical health experts who oversee rigorous protocols of daily therapy sessions at the highly regarded facility.  However, leveling off of patient admissions for abuse of painkillers and prescription drugs at the end of 2010 year may signal that the economy is stabilizing or that this is the U.S. public's perception.

Key Findings from Cliffside Malibu's Review:

  • The increase in the proportion of patients seeking treatment for prescription drug and painkiller addiction unrelated to injury has increased 143% since 2005 (from 21.8% to 52.9%). 

  • The largest yearly increase in proportion of patients seeking treatment for prescription drug and painkiller addiction was 60.1% from 2007 to 2008 (at start of the economic crisis)

  • Xanax is by far the most abused substance among patients admitted for treatment of prescription medication addiction (60% of cases), followed by Klonopin and Oxycontin.

  • Beginning in 2007, increasing numbers of patients cited the country's financial situation a

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