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Researchers find significant increase in painkillers prescribed to US adults in the ER
Date:3/14/2014

Innovation at GW SMHS. "When patients in pain want opioids, but don't get them which is common they may report a poor experience. We need to carefully consider how to balance these issues when it comes to national policy, particularly local and national payment policies, in this country."

The study analyzed data from the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, exploring which demographic groups, medications, and reasons for visiting the emergency room may account for this change in prescribing rates. In their analysis, the authors found the following over the ten-year study period:

  • Opioid prescribing increases across all age groups, including those over 65 years

  • Increases in opioid use in both blacks and whites; however, blacks were consistently prescribed fewer opioids than whites

  • Significant increases in opioid use in all categories of payer

  • Largest proportional increase in opioid prescriptions in Midwestern states; Highest overall frequency of opioids prescribed in Western states; Lowest rates of opioid utilization in Northeast states

  • Opioids more commonly prescribed in urban emergency departments and in nonprofit hospitals

  • Increases in prescription rates for all opioid analgesics, except codeine and meperidine

  • Greatest relative increases in use of hydromorphone (known as Dilaudid) and morphine; Hydromorphone and oxycodone had the greatest relative increases from 2005-2010


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Contact: Lisa Anderson
lisama2@gwu.edu
202-994-3121
George Washington University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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