How much do you know about the aftermath of a nonfatal opioid overdose? Take our 10-question quiz to find out.
Opioids, Overdose, and Mortality: A 10-Question Quiz. The focus of reporting on the opioid crisis is the escalating number of deaths linked to acute overdose, often in an emergency department. But not all opioid overdoses are accidental or immediately deadly. What happens to those who survive an overdose? Find out what you know about the aftermath of a nonfatal opioid overdose with our 10-question quiz.
Question 1: In the year following a nonfatal opioid overdose, at what rate are survivors likely to die vs the general population?
Answer: C. About 25 times the rate of the general population. In a study that compared mortality rates between persons who survived a nonfatal opioid overdose and the demographically matched general population, the mortality rate among the former was 25 times of the latter.1
Question 2: Among those who survive a nonfatal opioid overdose, for which of the above causes of death are they at increased risk during the following year?
Answer: F. All of the above. This highlights the importance of closely monitoring both the physical and mental health of these patients following an overdose.1
Question 3: Among persons with an opioid use disorder, the risk of suicide appears to be greater than that of the general population by how much?
Question 4: During the year following an opioid overdose, are men or women more likely to commit suicide?
Question 6: Between July 2016 and September 2017, emergency department visits in the US for opioid overdoses remained the same or increased?
Question 7: True or False? Between 1980 and 2014, mortality rates related to drug use disorders rose in every county in the US.
Answer: A. True. There was a great deal of variation among counties, however, in the rates of increase in mortality, ranging from 8.2% to 8369%.5
Question 8: Based on current data, what is the best estimate of the number of opioid overdose deaths that may be suicides?
Answer: C. 20% to 30%. However, it is believed that the actual number of opioid overdoses that are suicides may be higher.2
Question 9: Which of the above analgesic medications is/are associated with depression and suicidal ideation as possible adverse effects?
Question 10: True or False? Current research indicates the use of gabapentin and an opioid together significantly increases the risk of death vs when an opioid is used alone.
Answer: A. True. The use of both gabapentin with an opioid has been reported to result in a 60% increase in the odds of opioid-related death vs opioid use alone.7 As gabapentin and opioids are both frequently prescribed analgesics for the management of chronic pain, it is important to be aware of the potential increased lethality due to the combination.
References:Â 1.Â Olfson M, Crystal S, Wall M, et al. Causes of death after nonfatal opioid overdose. JAMA Psychiatry. 2018.2.Â Oquendo MA, Volkow ND. Suicide: a silent contributor to opioid-overdose deaths. N Engl J Med. 2018;378:1567-1569.3.Â Seth P, Scholl L, Rudd RA, Bacon S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Report. Overdose deaths involving opioids, cocaine and psychostimulants-United States, 2015-2016. https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/67/wr/mm6712a1.htm?s_cid=mm6712a1_w. Published March 30, 2018. Accessed July 11, 2018.4.Â CDC Vitalsigns. Opioid overdoses treated in emergency departments. www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns. Published March 2018. Accessed July 11, 2018.5.Â Dwyer-Lindgren L, Bertozzi-Vila A, Stubbs RW, et al. Trends and patterns of geographic variation in mortality from substance use disorders and intentional injuries among US counties, 1980-2014. JAMA. 2018;319:1013-1023.6.Â Qato DM, Ozenberger K, Olfson M. Prevalence of prescription medications with depression as a potential adverse effect among adults in the United States. JAMA. 2018;319:2289-2298.Â 7.Â Gomes T, Juurlink DN, Antoniou T, et al. Gabapentin, opioids, and the risk of opioid-related death: a population-based nested case-control study. PLOS Med. 2017;14(10):e1002396.Â