Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Services Research & Development

Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

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

Primary care monitoring of long-term opioid therapy among veterans with chronic pain.

Krebs EE, Ramsey DC, Miloshoff JM, Bair MJ. Primary care monitoring of long-term opioid therapy among veterans with chronic pain. Pain medicine (Malden, Mass.). 2011 May 1; 12(5):740-6.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information vaww.hsrd.research.va.gov/dimensions/

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions



Abstract:

OBJECTIVE: To characterize long-term opioid prescribing and monitoring practices in primary care. DESIGN: Retrospective medical record review. SETTING: Primary care clinics associated with a large Veterans Affairs (VA) medical center. PATIENTS: Adult patients who filled 6 prescriptions for opioid medications from the outpatient VA pharmacy between May 1, 2006 and April 30, 2007. OUTCOME MEASURES: Indicators of potential opioid misuse, documentation of guideline-recommended opioid-monitoring processes. RESULTS: Ninety-six patients (57%) received a long-acting opioid, 122 (72%) received a short-acting opioid, and 50 (30%) received two different opioids. Indicators of some form of potential opioid misuse were present in the medical records of 55 (33%) patients. Of the seven guideline-recommended opioid-monitoring practices we examined, the mean number documented within 6 months was 1.7 (standard deviation [SD] 1.5). Pain reassessment was the most frequently documented process (N = 105, 52%), and use of an opioid treatment agreement was the least frequent (N = 19, 11%). Patients with indicators of potential opioid misuse had more documented opioid-monitoring processes than those without potential misuse indicators (2.4 vs 1.3, P < 0.001). After adjustment, potential opioid misuse was positively associated with the number of documented guideline-recommended processes (mean = 1.0 additional process, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.4, 1.5). CONCLUSIONS: Guideline-recommended opioid management practices were infrequently documented overall but were documented more often for higher risk patients who had indicators of potential opioid misuse. The relationship between guideline-concordant opioid management and high-quality care has not been established, so our findings should not be interpreted as evidence of poor quality opioid management. Research is needed to determine optimal methods of monitoring opioid therapy in primary care.





Questions about the HSR&D website? Email the Web Team.

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.