Characteristics of Primary Prescription and Over-the-Courter Treatment Admissions

Helping Families. Supporting Communities. Empowering Individuals.


Characteristics of Primary Prescription and Over-the-Counter Treatment Admissions


Department of Health and Human Services, SAMHSA


  • Prescription and over-the counter (OTC) drugs were the primary substances of abuse for 4 percent of the 1.9 million treatment admissions reported to the TEDS in 2002.
  • Of the more than 78,000 admissions for primary prescription or OTC drug abuse, 55 percent were for prescription narcotics, 28 percent for prescription stimulants, 10 percent for tranquilizers, 6 percent for sedatives, and less than 1 percent of OTC medications.
  • Females comprised a larger proportion of prescription and OTC drug admissions (46 percent) than they comprised among treatment admissions for all substances (30 percent).

Link to Full Report:

(Date Grant Summary Prepared: December 3, 2004)


Factors Associated with the Non-Medical Use of Prescription Drugs: Using Prevention Research to Guide Prevention Practice