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Prescription Drug Abuse Reaches Alarming Levels

Last updated on Monday, May 16, 2011

(UNDATED) - Experts say prescription drug abuse has reached alarming levels in Indiana.

The Federal Drug Enforcement Administration says arrests, death rates and crime linked to illegal use of prescription drugs mirrors the rest of the nation.

Some experts say prescription drug abuse is similar to crack cocaine abuse of the 1980s.

The DEA says more than seven million Americans are currently abusing prescription drugs and the centers for disease control says opiate deaths have tripled in eight years.

Here in Indiana, the DEA says painkillers Hydrocodone and Oxycodone are the drugs of choice among abusers who tend to be young, white and reside in rural areas of the state.

DEA Agents say pharmacy break-ins and robberies have risen along with the number of abusers.

Fairbanks Drug Counselor Tobyn Linton says prescription drug addiction is no different from addiction to other drugs.

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