Improving risk factor identification for opioid overdose deaths in Tennessee


Using death certificates alone to identify contributing substances in drug overdose deaths may result in misclassification and underestimation of the burden of illicit and prescription opioids and other drugs in drug-related deaths. To enable timely and targeted prevention in Tennessee (TN), the identification and monitoring of new drugs and trends in use should utilize toxicology and medicolegal death investigation data directly, as recommended by others 1-3. These data can inform mortality outcome definitions for improved surveillance and risk factor identification 4-7. To our knowledge, this is the first analysis to use statewide linked toxicology and death certificate data in TN.

Objective: To examine specific drugs present based on postmortem toxicology for prescription opioid, heroin, and fentanyl overdoses classified based on ICD-10 coding. To compare drugs identified from postmortem toxicology with those listed on the death certificate for opioid overdoses.

Primary Topic Areas: 
Original Publication Year: 
Event/Publication Date: 
January, 2019

June 18, 2019

Contact Us

National Syndromic
Surveillance Program

The National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) is a collaboration among states and public health jurisdictions that contribute data to the BioSense Platform, public health practitioners who use local syndromic surveillance systems, Center for Disease Control and Prevention programs, other federal agencies, partner organizations, hospitals, healthcare professionals, and academic institutions.

Site created by Fusani Applications