LANTANA, Fla. - According to the Centers for Disease Control, the rate of women overdosing on prescription painkillers has increased by more than 400 percent since 1999.
"I do remember making a conscious decision to take the medication when I didn't have pain."
Denise Corbisiero says she is still in recovery. she started abusing prescription painkillers after a medical procedure. She said, "It started with vicodin, and progressed to fentanyl, which is a medication they use in surgeries for surgery patients, and when I couldn't get any more prescriptions, I ended up on methadone."
Dr. John Achinapura with the Archstone Rehab Center said, "I think women are more prone to some certain pain issues. Women's bone structure is weaker than men, fibromyalgia tends to be something."
Dr. Achinapura says women are more prone to prescription painkillers because they can easily get it from their doctor. "They will go from doctor to doctor to doctor. They know what symptoms to present to get the meds that they like and it's easy for them to walk into an office and make an appointment."
Women over 24 years of age will look for the painkillers. "The young people tend to be involved with street drugs. First of all alcohol, they are binging in school and in college. They start young they are usually involved with inhalants.
Women like Denise say there is hope to break the cycle. "Getting through it has taught me that we can help others get through it as well. Everybody has the option to ask for help. I just don't know if women know there is help out there."
Archstone Rehab Center