Navigation Links
Study of Patients on Chronic Opioid Therapy finds Likely Non-adherent Patients Have Increased Healthcare Costs, More Hospital Days

BALTIMORE, March 17, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Patients undergoing opioid therapy for chronic pain who may not be following their prescription regimen have significantly higher overall healthcare costs, Ameritox Ltd. announced recently. The study was published in The American Journal of Managed Care.

"Considering all of the discussion right now around healthcare reform and controlling healthcare spending, this study highlights an opportunity to better manage a costly and at-risk population of patients – those on chronic opioid therapy," said Harry L. Leider, MD, co-author of the study.  Dr. Leider is Chief Medical Officer at Ameritox – a corporate sponsor of the research –and a faculty member with the American College of Physician Executives. "By focusing on patients who receive opioids and are likely non-adherent, clinicians can take concrete steps to improve patient safety and, ultimately, lower costs."  

The study analyzed managed care claims of more than 18 million patients, identifying a subset of pain patients on chronic opioid therapy. The study determined that patients on chronic opioid therapy who were likely non-adherent, as determined by urine drug testing results, had 14 percent higher healthcare costs and 35 percent more hospital days.

Likely non-adherence to prescribed opioid therapy was identified through urine drug monitoring results and included patients with results of a prescribed medication not found, the presence of a non-prescribed drug, the presence of an illicit drug found in the urine, or based on the expected amount of a prescribed drug found.

The study concluded that improving adherence among patients with chronic pain could help reduce healthcare spending and improve health outcomes. "Opioids are an important tool in pain management," added Leider. "This study reinforces a growing belief that pain medication monitoring must be part of the pain management paradigm.  Urine drug monitoring can provide clinicians with information to help improve medication adherence and outcomes among their patients, while controlling overall costs."

Among the Key Findings in the Study:

  • Overall healthcare spending for patients on chronic opioid therapy was over $23,000 per year (2008 dollars)
  • Total healthcare costs were 14 percent higher for likely non-adherent patients ($26,433) over a 12 month period following initial urine drug testing.
  • Likely non-adherent patients had 35 percent more hospital days.

  • About the Study: Data for the study were obtained from a managed care claims database of 18 million people enrolled between July 1, 2005 and Sept. 30, 2008. The data include geographically diverse commercial, Medicare Advantage and Medicaid health plan members in the United States. Data for classification were obtained from an independent database of urine drug testing results. Patients with evidence of long-term prescription opioid use (defined as at least 120 days over any consecutive six month period) were selected for the study. More than 2,100 patients were classified based on urine drug testing results. The study was funded by Ameritox.

    For the full text or a PDF of this study, please go to:

    About Ameritox: Ameritox is the nation's leader in pain medication monitoring solutions, offering specialized laboratory testing and reporting services. Ameritox's expertise and innovative science provides physicians with insights and support to enhance and optimize the care of chronic pain patients. Ameritox offers Rx Guardian(SM), the most thorough and personalized lab service available and the only pain medication testing program with a proprietary methodology to help physicians assess whether patients are taking their pain medication as directed. Medication monitoring helps physicians make more informed clinical decisions and manage the risks and complexities associated with prescribing pain medications. Ameritox is headquartered in Baltimore, MD with laboratory facilities in Midland, TX and Greensboro, NC.

    To learn more about urine drug monitoring solutions, visit

    © 2011, Ameritox, Ltd. All rights reserved. AMERITOX, the AMERITOX logos, PAIN MEDICATION MONITORING SOLUTIONS, AMERITOX MEDICATION MONITORING SOLUTIONS, Rx GUARDIAN AUTOREMINDER, Rx GUARDIAN and PROTECT YOUR PATIENTS, PROTECT YOUR PRACTICE, are trademarks of Ameritox. All other trademarks are the claimed trademarks of others.For more information, contact: Michele Hart-Henry

    SOURCE Ameritox Ltd.
    Copyright©2010 PR Newswire.
    All rights reserved

    Related medicine technology :

    1. iTherX Initiates Phase 1b Study of First-in-Class Hepatitis C Virus Entry Inhibitor ITX-5061
    2. Cornerstone Pharmaceuticals Announces Positive Results of Emulsiphan Safety Study
    3. Tolerx and GlaxoSmithKline Announce Phase 3 Defend-1 Study of Otelixizumab in Type 1 Diabetes Did Not Meet Its Primary Endpoint
    4. Sanofi-aventis and Regeneron Report Top-line Results from Phase III Study with aflibercept (VEGF Trap) in Second-Line Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
    5. Six-Month Prospective Multi-Center Study Reports Efficacy Rates for AMS Elevate Anterior and Apical Prolapse Repair System
    6. BioTox Sciences (BTS) Deploys eStudy™ Hosted Solution for Management of GLP & Non-GLP Preclinical Studies
    7. Positive Findings From Excellagen Matrix Clinical Study Published in Peer-Reviewed Journal Wound Repair and Regeneration
    8. DATATRAK Awarded First Study With Kreara Solutions
    9. Amicus Therapeutics Announces FDA Agreement to Commence Phase 2 Study of AT2220 Co-administered with Enzyme Replacement Therapy for Pompe Disease
    10. Idenix Announces Data Presentations at the 46th Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL)
    11. Educational Efforts Reduce COPD Costs by $3.4 Million in East Texas Study
    Post Your Comments:
    (Date:11/26/2015)... --> --> ... immunotherapy with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy for advanced cancer.   ... with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy for advanced cancer.   ... with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy for advanced cancer.   ... immunotherapy can be efficiently combined with photodynamic therapy (PDT) ...
    (Date:11/26/2015)... --> --> ... find optimal contrast weighting of MRI for patients with ... a research agreement with SyntheticMR in order to use SyMRI ... is possible to generate multiple contrast images from a single ... left, thus making it possible to both fine tune images ...
    (Date:11/26/2015)... , November 26, 2015 3D bioprinting ... 2022, according to a new report by Grand View Research ... Disease (CKD) which demands kidney transplantation is expected to boost ... effective substitute for organ transplantation. --> 3D bioprinting ... 2022, according to a new report by Grand View Research ...
    Breaking Medicine Technology:
    (Date:11/27/2015)... , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ProSidebar: Fashion ... Final Cut Pro X. With ProSidebar: Fasion, video editors can easily add an ... as a minimalist title opener. Utilize presets featuring self-animating drop zones, lines, bars, ...
    (Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Intellitec ... Dynamics SL User Group (MSDSLUG). Recognized as Microsoft’s official group for end users ... Dynamics SL software users, partners, industry experts and representatives. Intellitec Solutions’ membership status ...
    (Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Keeping in mind ... mental health and wellness consultation, has collaborated with a leading web-based marketplace for ... gap experienced by parents and bring advice from parenting experts within their reach. ...
    (Date:11/27/2015)... Rosa, CA (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... Northern California Medical Associates, Inc. and Dr. Tucker Bierbaum with Emergency Medicine at ... meeting. They observed that both STEMI and Sepsis conditions present in similar ways and ...
    (Date:11/26/2015)... MI (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... for substance abuse located in central Michigan, have come together on Thanksgiving Day ... specially produced video, available for viewing on the Serenity Point YouTube channel, patients ...
    Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):