More than 47,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2014 - the most ever recorded in one year, US officials say.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report on Friday that showed overdose deaths jumped 7% from just one year earlier.
The spike in deaths has coincided with a rapid rise in the abuse of opioid-based prescription painkillers such as oxycontin and hydrocodone.
The CDC said 61% of the deaths involved some type of opioid, including heroin.
Many abusers of painkillers shift to using heroin as it becomes harder to obtain the prescription medications.