Study: Americans need to be careful with painkillers

December 13, 2010 4:07:14 PM PST
A new study warns older Americans in particular to be extremely careful with prescription painkillers.

Researchers looked at data from 31,000 patients who took 'opioids' to relieve pain for conditions other than cancer. They found that patients prescribed codeine had a 205 per cent greater risk of dying than patients taking another opioid ? hydrocodone and patients on oxycodone had a 243 percent greater risk dying.

The study was published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.