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23 August 2013

Painkillers can lead to heroin use

Illegal use of prescription pain drugs increases a person's risk of becoming a heroin user, a report suggests.

Illegal use of prescription pain drugs increases a person's risk of becoming a heroin user, a US government report suggests.

It also noted, however, that only 3.6% of people who had illegally used prescription pain medicines started using heroin within five years.

"Prescription pain relievers, when used properly for their intended purpose, can be of enormous benefit to patients, but their nonmedical use can lead to addiction, serious physical harm and even death," Dr Peter Delany, director of SAMHSA's Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, said in an agency news release.

The U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse has more about heroin.

 
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