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Acetaminophen Abuse Among Seniors

How the "Opioid Epidemic" Has Exposed the Hidden Dangers of Acetaminophen

by Don Drake, Connelly Law Offices, Ltd.

Danger lurking here

"Substance use disorders among our seniors have nearly doubled since 2006, affecting almost 6 million older adults," said Attorney RJ Connelly III. "The reality is that seniors with a substance use problem face many more risks than younger people due to cognitive impairments, medication interactions, nutritional concerns, poor social supports, and the risk of falls. Misusing or abusing substances and medications is also linked to increased mortality rates and higher costs of healthcare." According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, between 4 and 9 percent of older adults, aged sixty-five and older, use prescription opioids to manage their pain. The same source reports that opioid prescriptions for older adults increased by a factor of nine.