Deaths from preventable poisoning numbered 62,399 in 2018, the most current data year. The death rate per 100,000 population was 19.1. Males are at greatest risk, with a death rate of 26.8 compared to 11.6 for females. Total poisoning deaths decreased 4%, from 64,795 in 2017, but are still well over five times the 1999 total.

 Drug poisonings account for 94% of poisoning deaths, more frequently referred to as drug overdoses. More than two-thirds of these drug overdose deaths involved opioids.

 Deaths due to alcohol poisoning remained relatively stable in 2018, totaling 2,254. Alcohol poisoning deaths for males outnumbered those for females by 3 to 1. Alcohol poisoning deaths increased 1.1% among males but decreased 5.2% for females compared to 2017. It should be noted that alcohol may also be present in combination with other drugs.

Carbon monoxide poisoning is included in the category of “other gases and vapors” and totaled 435 deaths in 2018, an increase of 9.0% from 2017. Use the interactive poisoning chart to explore trends over time, by sex, and age group.

 Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, WONDER

  • Chart
  • Data Table
How to Use Injury Facts® Charts and Tables