Painkillers blamed in death of Oklahoma linebacker

by GLMO Editor

When young people suddenly die, it's not unusual to find  that pharmeceutical drugs are involved.

When young people suddenly die, it's not unusual to find that pharmeceutical drugs are involved.

CNN reports that the death of a University of Oklahoma football player was caused by multiple drugs in his system at the time of his tragic death. His parents are just finding out details of the cause of their son's death and are making public their feelings.

Austin Box, 22, was Oklahoma University's star linebacker, had suffered many serious injuries in his career and his parents were not aware that he was taking the pain relievers and anti-anxiety, anti-depression drugs.

An informational copy of the state medical examiner's report reveals that there were six different drugs in his body when he died and that the probable cause of death was mixed drug toxicity.

Here's a list of the drugs found in his blood:

Pain killers: Oxymorphone, morphine, hydrocodone, hydromorphone and oxycodone.
Anti-anxiety/anti-depression drug: Alprazolam

Here's part of what Box's parent's had to say in their statement to the press:

"There is no greater pain than the loss of a child. The pain is intensified by knowing that the death of your child could have been prevented. "

We share Craig and Gail Box's sentiments of how painful this young man's death is and the added pain in knowing that it could have been prevented. It didn't have to happen.

Box died on May 19, 2011 at the age of 22 after being found unconscious at a home in El Reno, Oklahoma.

Harvard Health Publications state that approximately 100 young athletes die of sudden death each year just in the United States. Unfortunately, the Harvard Medical School article doesn't even mention the problem that many of these deaths are related to use of pharmaceutical drugs. The total focus is on heart problems.

What lesson can we learn from this needless death of a fine young athlete? Pharmaceutical drugs are dangerous and if you are considering the use of even over the counter pain relievers, educate yourself first. It will be you, not your doctor, who will have to live with the consequences of your decisions.

Harvard Health Publications

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