Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Substance misuse in older people

Injecting drug use continues in older drug users too

BMJ 2017; 359 doi: (Published 17 October 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;359:j4738
  1. Peter Higgs, senior lecturer1,
  2. Paul Dietze, professor2
  1. 1Department of Public Health, La Trobe University, Bundoora Campus, Melbourne 3083, Australia
  2. 2Burnet Institute, Melbourne 3004, Australia
  1. p.higgs{at}

Rao and Roche note that the number of people aged over 50 who have substance misuse problems is rising globally across a range of settings.1 This rise also applies to people who inject drugs, at least in the developed world.2

Australian surveillance data from 2016 indicate a large, ageing cohort of (predominantly) opioid injectors.3 Similarly, national data show that 22% of over …

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