Clinicians should get their patients tested for drugs before prescribing them opioid or benzodiazepine medications—and on a regular basis when patients are on those drugs—as drug-drug interactions may be associated with risks, according to a study presented during the 2018 PAINWeek conference.
“Clinicians should be aware of potentially dangerous drug interactions including those of non-prescribed agents,” the authors noted. “The extent of concurrent use of benzodiazepines and opioids, particularly non-prescribed use, cannot be determined by prescription drug database monitoring programs, suggesting the need for more effective clinician assessment and intervention. Our results support the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention opioid prescribing guidelines, which indicate that drug testing should occur before and periodically throughout opioid use and that testing should be extended to patients prescribed benzodiazepines as well.”
Gudin J, McClure FL, Niles J, Kaufman H. Concurrent use of opioid and benzodiazepine: What the Prescription Drug Monitoring database does not tell you. Presented at: PAINWeek 2018; September 4-8, 2018; Las Vegas, Nevada. Poster 44.