Nav: Home

New, persistent opioid use common after surgery

April 12, 2017

Among about 36,000 patients, approximately 6 percent continued to use opioids more than three months after their surgery, with rates not differing between major and minor surgical procedures, according to a study published by JAMA Surgery.

Millions of Americans undergo surgery each year, and many patients receive their first exposure to opioids following surgery. Despite increased focus on reducing opioid prescribing for long-term pain, little is known regarding the incidence and risk factors for persistent opioid use after surgery. Chad M. Brummett, M.D., of the University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, and colleagues used nationwide insurance claims data set from 2013 to 2014 to identify U.S. adults (ages 18 to 64 years) without opioid use in the year prior to surgery. For patients filling a perioperative opioid prescription, the researchers calculated the incidence of persistent opioid use for more than 90 days among patients who had not used opioids previously, after both minor and major surgical procedures, and assessed data for patient-level predictors of persistent opioid use.

A total of 36,177 patients met the inclusion criteria, with 29,068 (80 percent) receiving minor surgical procedures and 7,109 (20 percent) receiving major procedures. The group had an average age of 45 years and was predominately female (66 percent) and white (72 percent). The rates of new persistent opioid use were similar between the two groups, ranging from 5.9 percent to 6.5 percent. By comparison, the incidence in the nonoperative control group was only 0.4 percent. Risk factors independently associated with new persistent opioid use included preoperative tobacco use, alcohol and substance abuse disorders, mood disorders, anxiety, and preoperative pain disorders.

"New persistent opioid use after surgery is common and is not significantly different between minor and major surgical procedures but rather associated with behavioral and pain disorders. This suggests its use is not due to surgical pain but addressable patient-level predictors. New persistent opioid use represents a common but previously underappreciated surgical complication that warrants increased awareness," the authors write.
-end-
(JAMA Surgery. Published online April 12, 2017.doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2017.0504. This study is available pre-embargo at the For The Media website.)

Editor's Note: Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.

To place an electronic embedded link to this study in your story: This link will be live at the embargo time: http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamasurgery/fullarticle/10.1001/jamasurg.2017.0504

The JAMA Network Journals

Related Opioids Articles:

Most reproductive-age women using opioids also use another substance
The majority of reproductive-age and pregnant women who use opioids for non-medical purposes also use at least one other substance, ranging from nicotine or alcohol to cocaine, according to a University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health analysis.
At-risk chronic pain patients taper opioids successfully with psychological tools
Psychological support and new coping skills are helping patients at high risk of developing chronic pain and long-term, high-dose opioid use taper their opioids.
More than half of all opioid prescriptions go to people with mental illness
Fifty-one percent of all opioid medications distributed in the US each year are prescribed to adults with mood disorders such as depression and anxiety, according to new research from the University of Michigan and the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth.
Study examines opioid use in patients with rheumatoid arthritis
A new analysis indicates that the use of opioid pain medications in older US rheumatoid arthritis patients peaked in 2010 and is now declining slightly.
Depressed patients more likely to be prescribed opioids
A new study shows that patients with low back pain who were depressed were more likely to be prescribed opioids and receive higher doses.
Women who focus negatively, magnify chronic pain, more likely to be taking prescribed opioids
Female chronic pain sufferers who catastrophize, a psychological condition in which pain is exaggerated or irrationally focused on, not only report greater pain intensity, but are more likely to be taking prescribed opioids than men with the same condition, according to a study published Online First in Anesthesiology, the peer-reviewed medical journal of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA).
Opioids following cesarean delivery may be over-prescribed
In two papers, both published online June 8 in Obstetrics & Gynecology, researchers quantified the number of pills that are typically prescribed following cesarean delivery and tested a shared decision making tool, in which patients select the amount of medication they are prescribed.
One in 5 surgical weight-loss patients take prescription opioids 7 years after surgery
While the proportion of adults with severe obesity using prescription opioids initially declines in the months after bariatric surgery, it increases within a matter of years, eventually surpassing pre-surgery rates of patients using the potentially addictive pain medications, according to new research from a National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded multicenter study led by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.
Brain opioids help us to relate with others
A new Finnish research reveals how brain's opioids modulate responses towards other people's pain.
Worse pain outcomes after knee replacement for patients who took opioids before surgery
Six months after knee replacement surgery, pain outcomes were not as good for patients who previously took prescription opioids, according to a study in the May 17 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

Related Opioids Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Crisis
There's no greater threat to humanity than climate change. What can we do to stop the worst consequences? This hour, TED speakers explore how we can save our planet and whether we can do it in time. Guests include climate activist Greta Thunberg, chemical engineer Jennifer Wilcox, research scientist Sean Davis, food innovator Bruce Friedrich, and psychologist Per Espen Stoknes.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#527 Honey I CRISPR'd the Kids
This week we're coming to you from Awesome Con in Washington, D.C. There, host Bethany Brookshire led a panel of three amazing guests to talk about the promise and perils of CRISPR, and what happens now that CRISPR babies have (maybe?) been born. Featuring science writer Tina Saey, molecular biologist Anne Simon, and bioethicist Alan Regenberg. A Nobel Prize winner argues banning CRISPR babies won’t work Geneticists push for a 5-year global ban on gene-edited babies A CRISPR spin-off causes unintended typos in DNA News of the first gene-edited babies ignited a firestorm The researcher who created CRISPR twins defends...