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Chronic pain is common among people with HIV, but it may not drive opioid use disorder.
Opioid use disorder is fueling a rise in youth hepatitis C cases and a stabilization of a long decline in HIV among people who use drugs.
Taking opioids at the same time as benzodiazepines, such as Xanax and Ativan, is also associated with overdose.
Experts are not certain what this latest trend signifies for the trajectory of the opioid use disorder epidemic, however.
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