Volume 28, Issue 1 (January 1983)
Deaths Related to Propoxyphene or Codeine or Both
Ninety-nine deaths involving propoxyphene or codeine or both were investigated through interviews with surviving relatives and associates. The criterion for admission to this study was the presence of propoxyphene or codeine in the body fluids or tissues, determined analytically. The codeine-related group included more ethnic minority persons, more histories of primary drug addiction, more users of street drugs, and more accidental deaths. In the propoxyphenerelated group there were fewer histories of drug addiction and more persons with mental illness and more suicides. Most victims had considerable past experience with one or both of the drugs and other drugs as well. Propoxyphene was usually obtained by physician prescription. Codeine was often obtained illegally.