Psychiatric Disorders are overlooked in patients with drug abuse

Forensic Summary by Gina Gallucci

Patients with a dual diagnosis of mental disorder and drug abuse suffer from decreased treatment compliance and therefore, a lower life expectancy than that of the general population and those that suffer solely from drug addiction. A study was done that looked at all autopsies done on drug addicts by the Department of Forensic Medicine in Copenhagen. There were two categories of people who were dual diagnosed: those from reports of mental illness and those who were found to have psychotropics in their blood at time of death.

From 1992 to 2002, the number of those addicted to drugs with psychotropics in their blood rose more than fifteen percent. This population is also a great deal younger than their drug addicted counterparts. Those that were dual diagnosed from reports almost doubled in the same time frame. It was found that fatal poisoning were the leading cause of death in both populations, and methadone was the leading drug responsible for the poisonings.

Kruckow, Line, Kristian Linnet, and Jytte Banner. “Psychiatric Disorders Are Overlooked in Patients with Drug Abuse.” Danish Medicine Journal 63.6 (2016): n. pag. Web.


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