Role of Cocaine and Psychostimulants In Overdose Deaths On The Rise According To CDC

The role of cocaine and psychostimulants (such as methamphetamine) in overdose deaths in the US is reportedly on the rise. On May 3, 2019, the federal Centers for Disease Control reported that:

Among all 2017 drug overdose deaths, 13,942 (19.8%) involved cocaine, and 10,333 (14.7%) involved psychostimulants. Death rates increased from 2016 to 2017 for both drug categories across demographic characteristics, urbanization levels, Census regions, and states. In 2017, opioids were involved in 72.7% and 50.4% of cocaine-involved and psychostimulant-involved overdoses, respectively, and the data suggest that increases in cocaine-involved overdose deaths from 2012 to 2017 were driven primarily by synthetic opioids. Conversely, increases in psychostimulant-involved deaths from 2010 to 2017 occurred largely independent of opioids, with increased co-involvement of synthetic opioids in recent years.

According to the CDC:

During 2003–2017, rates for all psychostimulant-involved deaths increased from 2010 to 2017. Death rates involving psychostimulants and any opioid increased from 2003 to 2010, followed by sharper increases from 2010 to 2015 and from 2015 to 2017. Death rates involving psychostimulants and synthetic opioids increased from 2010 to 2015, followed by a sharper increase from 2015 to 2017 (Figure 2). Rates of psychostimulant-involved deaths without any opioid involvement increased from 2008 to 2017, and rates without synthetic opioid involvement increased from 2008 to 2017 (Figure 2).

Related DWF Chapters for More Information:
Causes of Death
Cocaine and Crack
Methamphetamine and Amphetamine-Type Stimulants