6,631 women in the United States died from overdosing on opiate pain relievers in 2010. The number of deaths was a five-fold increase from the 1,287 deaths in 1999, according to the Center for Disease Control.
In 2010, the number of men in the United States who died from overdosing on prescription painkillers was 10,020.
In total, the CDC reported that on average about 42 women in the United States die from overdosing on all forms of drugs. Around 18 women die each day from overdosing on prescription painkillers.
943,356 women were admitted into emergency rooms across the country in 2010 due to abusing drugs or misusing them.
Health experts stated that pain killing drugs such as hydrocodone, oxycodone and fentanyl are more likely to be prescribed to women and to receive higher doses.
Source: JoNel Aleccia, “Opiate overdose deaths ‘skyrocketed’ in women, CDC finds,” NBC News, July 3, 2013.