Cocaine Overdoses Rising Especially Among African Americans Interview with:
“Cocaine” by Nightlife Of Revelry is licensed under CC BY 2.0Dr. Dave Thomas PhD

Health Scientist Administrator
National Institute on Drug Abuse What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: At the National Institute on Drug Abuse, we support research on all forms of drug use, and are aware that cocaine misuse is on the rise.  We are aware that various forms of drug use can have greater prevalence by race, sex, age and other population characteristics.

The main finding of this paper is that cocaine overdose rates are on the rise and that that the group hit hardest is the non-Hispanic black population. What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Response: Although strategies to address prescription opioid and heroin overdoses remain critical for all racial/ethnic groups, prevention efforts focused on reducing cocaine-related deaths among the non-Hispanic black population are also needed. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?


Response: This finding reinforces our commitment to help understand and reduce drug use in general, regardless of the race, sex, age or any other characteristics of the individuals with a problem with drugs. Thus, we are interested in supporting research to give us a better understanding of why we are seeing increased cocaine overdoses, and how these trends might be reversed. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Meredith S. Shiels, Neal D. Freedman, David Thomas, Amy Berrington de Gonzalez. Trends in U.S. Drug Overdose Deaths in Non-Hispanic Black, Hispanic, and Non-Hispanic White Persons, 2000–2015. Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 5 December 2017] doi: 10.7326/M17-1812

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.


[wysija_form id=”1″]






Last Updated on December 5, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD