MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Stanford Chihuri, MPH
Staff Associate/Data Analyst
Department of Anesthesiology, College of Physicians and Surgeons
Columbia University Medical Center
NY, NY 10032
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: In the past 2 decades, consumption of prescription opioids has substantially increased in the U.S. Prescription drugs may cause drowsiness and impaired cognition which may interfere with psychomotor functioning necessary during the operation of a motor vehicle. The current study assessed time trends in prescription opioids detected in drivers killed in motor vehicle crashes from 1995 to 2015 in 6 states in the U.S.
Results of the study showed that the prevalence of prescription opioids detected in fatally injured drivers has increased 700% in the past 2 decades.
MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Response: Use of prescription opioids among drivers involved in fatal crashes has been on the rise. Prescription opioid prevalence was higher in female than male drivers. The most commonly detected prescription opioids were hydrocodone, morphine and oxycodone.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Response: Prescription opioids may have a role to play in motor vehicle crashes. Additional research is urgently needed to assess the role of prescription opioids in motor crashes.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: Research on drugs and driving safety is limited due to methodological challenges involving drug testing in different jurisdictions.
MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.
Stanford Chihuri, Guohua Li. Trends in Prescription Opioids Detected in Fatally Injured Drivers in 6 US States: 1995–2015. American Journal of Public Health, 2017; e1 DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2017.303902
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