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Research Finds Drug-Related Suicide Attempts Doubled in Those Age 45-64

Fred Bodimer
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Photo: PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images

Photo: PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images

fred-bodimer Fred Bodimer
Fred Bodimer joined KMOX in 1982 after graduating from the University...
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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Drug-related suicide attempts are climbing nationwide – including here in St. Louis.

A just-released national report found substance abuse-related suicide attempts were on the rise for all age groups, but more than doubled among people age 45 to 64 from 2005 to 2011.

Dr. Ross Heller, an emergency room physician at St. Louis University Hospital, agrees with seeing a “significant upstroke” in those patients.

“I’m surprised by people who I see on substances at an older age,” Heller says. “You know, it used to be pretty much a young person’s phenomenon. But I’ve seen a 70-plus person overdose.”

Heller says part of the problem is the lack of treatment centers for people with addictions to seek out help.

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