August 25, 2016
The AAP’s Committee on Substance Use and Prevention recently released a policy statement that urged physicians to address the necessity for medication-assisted treatment resources for adolescents and young adults with opioid use disorder.
“Between 1991 and 2012, the rate of ‘nonmedical use’ of opioid medication by adolescents and young adults more than doubled, and the rate of opioid use disorders, including heroin addiction, increased in parallel,” Sharon Levy, MD, MPH, FAAP, director of the adolescent substance abuse program and assistant professor in pediatrics at Boston Children’s Hospital, and colleagues wrote. “The rate of fatal opioid overdose more than doubled between 2000 and 2013. In 2008, more than 16,000 people died of opioid pain reliever overdose.
“Other serious adverse outcomes result from intravenous drug use and include endocarditis, abscesses and infection with hepatitis C.”