Fentanyl Facts: It’s The Leading Cause Of Death For Americans Ages 18 To 49


Fentanyl Facts: It’s The Leading Cause Of Death For Americans Ages 18 To 49. The following article has been written by Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr.


The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), is gearing up for National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week 2023 to be held March 20-26.

81,230 drug overdose deaths occurred during the 12 months from May 2019 to May 2020, the largest number of drug overdoses for a 12-month interval ever recorded for the U.S.

Fentanyl is now the number one cause of overdose deaths in the country, surpassing heroin by a large margin.


Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr.

Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of directing award-winning public relations for national and state criminal justice agencies. Interviewed multiple times by every national news outlet. Former Senior Specialist for Crime Prevention for the Department of Justice’s clearinghouse. Former Director of Information Services, National Crime Prevention Council. Former Adjunct Associate Professor of criminology and public affairs-University of Maryland, University College. Former advisor to presidential and gubernatorial campaigns. Former advisor to the “McGruff-Take a Bite Out of Crime” national media campaign. Certificate of Advanced Study-Johns Hopkins University. Former police officer. Aspiring drummer.

Author of ”Success With The Media: Everything You Need To Survive Reporters and Your Organization” available at Amazon and additional booksellers.


I have little to add to what’s below. There are times when brevity seems to be the best policy when it comes to extremely complicated topics like addiction and fentanyl.

Two suspected fentanyl dealers from Mexican cartel skip arraignment after walking on cashless bail

NBC News

The night before Jose Alberto Perez overdosed on fentanyl, the 14-year-old pleaded with his mother not to take him to the hospital because “he was not a drug addict.”

“His lips were ash white. His pupils were popping out,” the boy’s mother, Lilia Astudillo, said. But she yielded to his wishes, despite his obvious distress.

Astudillo planned to get her son medical attention the next day, but by morning he was dead.

“It hurts you to see your son after he’s gone and ask yourself, Why didn’t I know about this sooner to help him?”


NBC News 

Fentanyl Facts

Fentanyl is a strong synthetic opioid that has been used in clinical settings since 1968. It is often used during surgery and for pain management.

Only two salt-sized grains of fentanyl can kill someone.

Most of the fentanyl trafficked by the Sinaloa and CJNG Cartels is being mass-produced at secret factories in Mexico with chemicals sourced largely from China.

In 2021, the DEA issued a Public Safety Alert on the widespread drug trafficking of fentanyl in the form of fentanyl-laced, fake prescription pills.

Most offenders connected to the justice system have histories of substance abuse or mental illness or emotional disorders making them highly suspectable to the power of fentanyl. The drugs offenders take seem to become more powerful with every passing decade.

Per the DEA, violent crime rates showed a disturbing increase, with murder, aggravated assault, and other violent crimes on the rise. Drug trafficking is a known contributor to violent crimes in America.

81,230 drug overdose deaths occurred during the 12 months from May 2019 to May 2020, the largest number of drug overdoses for a 12-month interval ever recorded for the U.S.

As Fentanyl deaths in US reach record numbers, NYC encourages junkies to “feel empowered” when using the drug

Fentanyl is the leading cause of death for Americans ages 18 to 49.

Fentanyl is now the number one cause of overdose deaths in the country, surpassing heroin by a large margin.

Over 150 people die every day from overdoses related to synthetic opioids like fentanyl, about 55,000 yearly.

Drug overdose deaths in the U.S. increased 28.5% between April 2020 and April 2021, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with three out of four overdose deaths involving synthetic opioids.

Fentanyl and other synthetic opioids are the most common drugs involved in overdose deaths. Even in small doses, it can be deadly.

What does Fentanyl look like? Fentanyl is typically available in two main types: powder and liquid. Powdered fentanyl can be made to look like other drugs. It is often pressed into pills that look exactly like prescription pills, such as Percocet or Xanax.

These drugs are brightly colored like chalk and candy, potentially making them more attractive to children and young people. Although these substances may resemble candy, don’t be fooled—they are deadly. It is important for parents to be aware of this new fentanyl disguise and to keep it away from children.

Drug users generally don’t know when their heroin is laced with fentanyl, so when they inject their usual quantity of heroin, they can inadvertently take a deadly dose of the substance. In addition, while dealers try to include fentanyl to improve potency, their measuring equipment usually isn’t fine-tuned enough to ensure they stay below the levels that could cause users to overdose.

The fentanyl sold on the street is almost always made in a clandestine lab; it is less pure than the pharmaceutical version and thus its effect on the body can be more unpredictable.

Heroin and fentanyl look identical.

Protecting the criminals: CA court official releases from jail two men arrested with enough fentanyl to kill millions

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 50-100 times stronger than morphine. Pharmaceutical fentanyl was developed for pain management treatment of cancer patients, applied in a patch on the skin. Because of its powerful opioid properties, Fentanyl is also diverted for abuse. Fentanyl is added to heroin to increase its potency, or be disguised as highly potent heroin.

Many users believe that they are purchasing heroin and actually don’t know that they are purchasing fentanyl – which often results in overdose deaths.

Drugs may contain deadly levels of fentanyl, and you wouldn’t be able to see it, taste it, or smell it. It is nearly impossible to tell if drugs have been laced with fentanyl unless you test your drugs with fentanyl test strips.

There is no 100 percent accurate way to test for fentanyl in a drug.

Test strips are inexpensive and typically give results within 5 minutes, which can be the difference between life or death. Even if the test is negative, take caution as test strips might not detect more potent fentanyl-like drugs, like carfentanil.

There is something that helps in the unfortunate scenario of an overdose — a drug called Naloxone or Narcan. It’s a medicine that can be given to a person to reverse a fentanyl overdose. Multiple naloxone doses might be necessary because of fentanyl’s potency.

According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the amount of fentanyl seized by the agency skyrocketed from 2020 to 2022. In the year ending September 2022, CBP seized a record 14,700 pounds of fentanyl, compared with 11,200 pounds in 2021 and 4,800 pounds in 2020.

In the first nine months of FY 2022 (October through June), U.S. Customs and Border Protection law enforcement agencies in San Diego and Imperial counties (CBP Field Operations and Border Patrol) seized 5,091 pounds of fentanyl – which amounts to about 60 percent of the 8,425 pounds of fentanyl seized around the entire country.

LET Radio Show and Podcast

Signs Of Overdose

Recognizing the signs of opioid overdose can save a life. Here are some things to look for:

  • Small, constricted “pinpoint pupils”
  • Falling asleep or losing consciousness
  • Slow, weak, or no breathing
  • Choking or gurgling sounds
  • Limp body
  • Cold and/or clammy skin
  • Discolored skin (especially in lips and nails)

Police Officers Exposed To Fentanyl

In the late 2010s, some media outlets began to report stories of police officers being hospitalized after touching powdered fentanyl, or after brushing it from their clothing.

Topical (or transdermal; via the skin) and inhalative exposure to fentanyl is extremely unlikely to cause intoxication or overdose (except in cases of prolonged exposure with very large quantities of fentanyl), and first responders such as paramedics and police officers are at minimal risk of fentanyl poisoning through accidental contact with intact skin.

A 2020 article from the Journal of Medical Toxicology stated that “the consensus of the scientific community remains that illness from unintentional exposures is extremely unlikely, because opioids are not efficiently absorbed through the skin and are unlikely to be carried in the air.”

‘I almost died’: San Diego PD releases video of deputy exposed to fentanyl, saved by fellow officer


The fentanyl crisis is an international undertaking. As with all emergencies, no one wants to take responsibility.

“Mexico’s president said Friday that U.S. families were to blame for the fentanyl overdose crisis because they don’t hug their kids enough.

The comment by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador caps a week of provocative statements from him about the crisis caused by the fentanyl, a synthetic opioid trafficked by Mexican cartels that has been blamed for about 70,000 overdose deaths per year in the United States.

López Obrador said family values have broken down in the United States, because parents don’t let their children live at home long enough. He has also denied that Mexico produces fentanyl.

On Friday, the Mexican president told a morning news briefing that the problem was caused by “a lack of hugs, of embraces.”

“There is a lot of disintegration of families, there is a lot of individualism, there is a lack of love, of brotherhood, of hugs and embraces,” López Obrador said of the U.S. crisis. “That is why they (U.S. officials) should be dedicating funds to address the causes.”

I have no idea how to solve the problem of fentanyl. It’s easy to suggest drug treatment (which normally has to be administered multiple times) but there’s not enough money being directed to a crisis as potent as fentanyl.

After fentanyl, there will be even more potent drugs coming onto the market. There always are.

See More

See more articles on crime and justice at Crime in America.

Most Dangerous Cities/States/Countries at Most Dangerous Cities.

US Crime Rates at Nationwide Crime Rates.

National Offender Recidivism Rates at Offender Recidivism.

The Crime in America.Net RSS feed (https://crimeinamerica.net/?feed=rss2) provides subscribers with a means to stay informed about the latest news, publications, and other announcements from the site.

Fentanyl Facts: It’s The Leading Cause Of Death For Americans Ages 18 To 49


Submit a Correction
Related Posts