Tell the FDA to warn about potentially fatal mix of opioids and benzodiazepines

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Tell the FDA to warn about potentially fatal mix of opioids and benzodiazepines

This petition had 2,159 supporters

WE NEED YOUR HELP TO STOP OVERDOSE DEATHS

In 2013, 22,767 people died of drug overdose deaths that involved prescription drugs and every day in the United States, 44 people die as a result of prescription opioid overdoses. Concurrent use of opioids and benzodiazepines increases the risk of fatal overdose. Sign this petition and tell the FDA to require clear warnings (known as "black box warnings") on these medications to educate healthcare providers and patients about the dangers of mixing these two drugs.

Combining opioids with benzodiazepines is dangerous. Biological data indicate that these two drug classes interact in the brain to place patients at increased risk of respiratory depression and fatal overdose. Epidemiological studies show that nearly 1 in 3 unintentional overdose deaths from prescription opioids also involve benzodiazepines. 

Nonetheless, more patients than ever before are being prescribed both opioids and benzodiazepines, and more are running into serious problems from combined use. Treatment admissions for substance use disorders involving both classes of medications at the same time in the United States increased by 569% from 2000 to 2010.

The science is clear: combining opioids with benzodiazepines is dangerous and is fueling the overdose epidemic. A black box warning will help to educate both patients and clinicians about this potentially lethal drug interaction. By following our recommendations, the FDA can take an important step to reduce the toll of addiction and fatal overdose in communities across the country.

Thank you for  your support on this critical issue. 

Petition Closed

This petition had 2,159 supporters