Am I at Risk?
Some prescription painkillers are sometimes referred to as opioids. These types of medications can go by many names, and it’s possible that you or a loved one may be taking opioids without even knowing.
Did you know?
Each of these medications is considered an opioid:
Codeine and dihydrocodeine, tramadol, buprenorphine, methadone, diamorphine, fentanyl, hydromorphone, morphine, oxycodone, and pethidine, among others
30% of surveyed patients who received opioids didn’t know they were taking opioids. 1
Respiratory depression can be a serious risk for anyone taking opioids.
You may be at increased risk if: 2-4
- You’re taking opioids for the first time.
- You have a respiratory condition (sleep apnea, COPD, asthma) or a chronic health condition.
- You’re combining opioids with alcohol other drugs, such as sleeping pills or cough medicine.
- You’re taking high opioid doses.
- You have a reduced tolerance of opioids following a detox.
The risks are too great to ignore.
About half of opioid-related deaths happen when a person is alone. Without intervention, permanent brain damage or death can occur within minutes.5
- 1 National Safety Council. Prescription opioid pain killer public opinion poll. October 2017.
- 2 Opioid Overdose.” World Health Organization, 28 Aug. 2020, www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/opioid-overdose.
- 3 Gupta K et al. Curr Opin Anaesthesiol. 2018;31(1):110-119.
- 4 Dunn KM et al. Annals of internal medicine. 2010;152(2):85-92.
- 5 Ontario Drug Policy Research Network. “Opioid Mortality Surveillance Report.” Public Health Ontario, 2019, p. 33,