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7-in-10 U.S. adults take at least one prescription

7-in-10 U.S. adults take at least one prescription
Nearly 1-in-4 U.S. women ages 50-64 are on an anti-depressant. (UPI Photo/Monika Graff) | License Photo

ROCHESTER, Minn., June 21 (UPI) -- Almost 7-in-10 U.S. adults take at least one prescription drug and more than 50 percent take two, researchers at the Mayo Clinic and Olmsted Medical Center say.

Study author Dr. Jennifer St. Sauver, of the Mayo Clinic Population Health Program in the Mayo Clinic Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery, said 17 percent of those studied were prescribed antibiotics, 13 percent were taking antidepressants, 13 percent were on opioids -- painkillers -- and 11 percent used medication to lower lipids such as cholesterol.

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Nearly 1-in-4 women ages 50-64 are on an antidepressant, the study found.

Drugs were prescribed to both men and women across all age groups, except high blood pressure drugs, which were seldom used before age 30, St. Sauver said.

"However, the second most common prescription was for antidepressants -- that suggests mental health is a huge issue and is something we should focus on," St. Sauver said. "And the third most common drugs were opioids, which is a bit concerning considering their addicting nature."

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