Ohio Tragedy: 18-Month-Old Dies, Police Suspect Opioid Overdose

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Ohio Tragedy: Boy, Just 18 Months Dies, Police Suspect Opioid Overdose

Last Thursday evening an infant overdosed on drugs that reportedly belonged to his mother – however, what type of drug(s) he consumed (i.e. prescription painkillers or something illicit, such as heroin) is unclear.

The boy, who was from Akron, was revived using the anti-overdose drug naloxone after emergency medical services arrived. A nine-year-old brother called 911 when he noticed that the infant was not breathing. He was taken to Akron’s Children’s Hospital, but unfortunately, he died three days later and his body has since been moved to the County Medical Examiner’s office for an autopsy, according to Lt. Rick Edwards of the Akron Police Department.

The investigator for the medical examiner, Gary Guenther told NBC News:

“We haven’t done the exam yet. Right now his death is being classified as a suspicious death of an 18-month-old. When he was brought it, it was as a suspected opioid overdose. That’s how it was reported.”

Guenther also noted that the child was the youngest suspected overdose victim he’d ever encountered.

The boy’s name has not been released. The mother reportedly fled the home after paramedics and police arrived, and the boy’s brother is in the care of the Summit County Children Services.

According to 2015 Ohio Drug Overdose Data: General Findings from the Department of Health, unintentional drug overdoses were responsible for 3,050 Ohio residents in 2015, the highest number on record. Overdose deaths increased by 20.5% from 2014 to 2015, and unintentional drug overdose deaths from fentanyl in the state more than doubled from 503 in 2014 to 1,155 in 2015.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 33,000 persons in the United States lost their lives in 2015 from an unintentional overdose related to prescription opioids or opiates. That number is expected to rise when the data is finalized for 2016.

~ G. Nathalee Serrels, M.A., Psychology



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