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It is the deadliest drug in America, and its use is increasing

And while fentanyl deaths have increased in all age groups, the youngest adults aged 15-34 have been the most affected. The number of 15 to 24-year-olds died from fentanyl overdoses from 2011 to 2016 by about 94% each year and by about 100% for 25 to 34-year-olds.

The researchers also found that whites had the overall frequency of fentanyl deaths, but blacks and Hispanics increased more rapidly. Between 2011 and 2016, blacks had an increase in fentanyl death rates of 140.6% per year and Hispanics an increase of 118.3% per year.

A report from the National Center for Health Statistics published in December found that fentanyl is the drug most commonly used in overdose deaths. In 2016, the drug was responsible for nearly 29% of overdose deaths, making it the deadliest drug in America.

The researchers analyzed information about death certificates, including fentanyl and fentanyl analogues. In previous analyzes, not only fentanyl but also synthetic opioids as a whole were considered.

Americans are more likely to overdose today than in a car accident. In 2017, more than 70,000 Americans died of overdose, and opioids are the main driver of US deaths. Opioids are a class of drugs that include illegal fentanyl and heroin, as well as commonly prescribed painkillers such as oxycodone and morphine.

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