A new study published in the National Bureau of Economic Research found an apparent connection between making certain opioids less addictive and the heroin epidemic.
The findings showed in 2010, when Purdue Pharma reconfigured OxyContin in an attempt to make it less susceptible to abuse, heroin overdose deaths began to rise. Researchers suspect the reformulation of the drug may have led users to find a cheaper alternative and said "each prevented opioid death was replaced with a heroin death."
Study authors concluded that developing abuse-deterrent drugs won't help end the opioid crisis, although the concept has been proposed by federal agencies and commissions to combat the epidemic.
Additional reporting from Newsy affiliate CNN.