By Kelly Young
Roughly half of opioid-naive inpatients are given an opioid during their hospital stay, finds a study of one U.S. health network in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Researchers examined opioid prescribing for nearly 150,000 opioid-naive inpatients in a network of Pennsylvania hospitals between 2010 and 2014.
Of the 48% who received an opioid during their stay, less than a quarter received a nonopioid analgesic beforehand. Roughly 6% of inpatients who received opioids were using them at 90 days, compared with 3% of inpatients who didn’t receive opioids. Outpatient opioid use was also higher among those who were still receiving opioids 12 hours before discharge, relative to those who didn’t receive opioids in the 24 hours before discharge.