Smaller Portions of Pain Relievers After ER Visits May Be Sufficient for Pain Relief Interview with:
Raoul Daoust, MD, CSPQ, MSc
Clinical Professor and researcher
Departments of Family Medicine and Emergency Medicine
Hôpital du Sacré-Coeur de Montréal What is the background for this study?

Response: Usually patients are prescribed too large a quantity of opioids and unused opioids are available for misuse. The tendency in the USA is to not prescribe opioids at all, leaving some patient in agonizing pain. I wanted to provide a tailored approach to prescribing opioids so patients have enough to manage their pain but almost no unused opioids available for misuse. What are the main findings?

Response: This research shows that, in general, patients consume few opioids but this varies depending on the type of painful condition. This suggest that we need to adapt the quantity of opioids given to patients according to these results and provide them in small portions, because half of patients consume 5 pills of morphine 5 mg (or equivalent of another opioid) during the two weeks after an ED visit. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Opioid prescriptions should be adapted to specific acute pain condition, and could be partition at the pharmacy with an expiration date to decreased unused opioids and possible misuse. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: We need to evaluate if applying these results has an impact on long-term use and misuse of opioids. Is there anything else you would like to add? Any disclosures?

Citation: 2023 European Emergency Medicine Congress presentation

Opioids for acute pain: how much to prescribe to minimize unused medication? (OPUM Study)

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Last Updated on September 18, 2023 by