Health Services Research & Development

Veterans Crisis Line Badge
Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstracts

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Harbaugh CM, Lee JS, Chua KP, Kenney B, Iwashyna TJ, Englesbe MJ, Brummett CM, Bohnert AS, Waljee JF. Association Between Long-term Opioid Use in Family Members and Persistent Opioid Use After Surgery Among Adolescents and Young Adults. JAMA surgery. 2019 Apr 17; 154(4):e185838.
PubMed logo Search for Abstract from PubMed
(This link leaves the website of VA HSR&D.)


Abstract: Importance: Prior studies have found a substantial risk of persistent opioid use among adolescents and young adults undergoing surgical and dental procedures. It is unknown whether family-level factors, such as long-term opioid use in family members, is associated with persistent opioid use. Objective: To determine whether long-term opioid use in family members is associated with persistent opioid use among opioid-naive adolescents and young adults undergoing surgical and dental procedures. Design, Setting, and Participants: This retrospective cohort study used data from a commercial insurance claims database for January 1, 2010, to June 30, 2016, to study 346?251 opioid-naive patients aged 13 to 21 years who underwent 1 of 11 surgical and dental procedures and who were dependents on a family insurance plan. Exposures: Long-term opioid use in family members, defined as having 1 or more family members who (1) filled opioid prescriptions totaling a 120 days' supply or more during the 12 months before the procedure date or (2) filled 3 or more opioid prescriptions in the 90 days before the procedure date. Main Outcomes and Measures: The main outcome measure was persistent opioid use, defined as 1 or more postoperative prescription opioid fills between 91 and 180 days among patients with an initial opioid prescription fill. Generalized estimating equations with robust SEs clustered at the family level were used to model persistent opioid use as a function of long-term opioid use among family members, controlling for procedure, total morphine milligram equivalents of the initial fill, and patient and family characteristics. Results: A total of 346?251 patients (mean [SD] age, 17.0?[2.3] years; 175?541 [50.7%] female) were studied. Among these patients, 257?085 (74.3%) had an initial opioid fill. Among patients with an initial opioid fill, 11?016 (4.3%) had long-term opioid use in a family member. Persistent opioid use occurred in 453 patients (4.1%) with long-term opioid use in a family member compared with 5940 patients (2.4%) without long-term opioid use in a family member (adjusted odds ratio, 1.54; 95% CI, 1.39-1.71). Conclusion and Relevance: The findings suggest that long-term opioid use among family members is associated with persistent opioid use among opioid-naive adolescents and young adults undergoing surgical and dental procedures. Physicians should screen young patients for long-term opioid use in their families and implement heightened efforts to prevent opioid dependence among patients with this important risk factor.