Prescription drug abuse is becoming more and more of a serious problem in this country. According to some estimates, sales of such drugs have quadrupled over the last decade in the United States --- and Oklahoma actually ranks number one (out of all 50 states) in deaths attributed to Rx drug overdoses. On this edition of StudioTulsa on Health, guest host Dr. John Schumann speaks with Dr. William Yarborough, a local expert in this regard. Dr.
Editor's Note: This story relies in part on eyewitness accounts of three undercover agents with the state Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control. The identities of the three agents have been camouflaged for their own safety.
STILLWATER—A group of teenagers engage in a spirited pick-up basketball game at one end of an apartment complex. A mother tries to corral her playful children after an afternoon walk. They don’t want to go inside; there is daylight to burn.
Oklahoma tops all states when it comes to non-medical use of painkillers. A federal survey determined that 8.1 percent of Oklahomans age 12 and older used painkillers for non-medical reasons during a 12-month period ending in 2009. The national average was 4.8 percent. Oklahoma’s rate was considerably higher than those of surrounding states; next in line were New Mexico and Colorado, both 5.7 percent.
Here's the full list of the top 10 states with the highest percentage of persons age 12 and older who use painkillers for non-medical purposes: