Lack of Patient Education as a Cause of Increased Postoperative Opioid Use

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr. Alexis Colvin, MDAssociate Professor of Orthopedic SurgeryIcahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Dr. Colvin

Dr. Alexis Colvin, MD
Associate Professor of Orthopedic Surgery
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: 40% of all opioid overdose deaths involve a prescription opioid and orthopaedic surgeons are the 3rd highest prescribers of opioids.  Set guidelines for post surgery opioid prescriptions have not been established.  Arthroscopic knee meniscectomy is one of the most common orthopaedic procedures.  The purpose of this study was to determine how many opioids were being prescribed  among a group of six sports fellowship trained orthopaedic surgeons versus how many patients were actually using.

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?

Response: There were a total of 32 patients included in the study.  The average prescription was for 42 pills with an average of 16.71 pills taken.  Opioids were 3X overprescribed and there were 808 unused pills.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: The results of this study led us to pursue the second study.

Preoperative Patient Education Significantly Decreases Postoperative Narcotic Use After Arthroscopic Meniscectomy

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: Our hypothesis for this study (based on the results from our first study) was that a lack of patient education regarding appropriate opioid use plays a role in elevated consumption.

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?  

Response:  All patients in our study underwent a 3 minute preoperative educational training on opioid use.  Each patient was prescribed 15 Percocet pills.  We found that the education program reduced the pill usage from 16.71 to 4 pills–a 318% reduction in usage.  The patients took less pills at all time points (1, 2, 3, and 4 weeks post surgery).

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report? 

Response: Current prescribing practices suggest ~3X overprescription of opioids after arthroscopic meniscectomy.  Lack of patient education is a cause of increased postoperative opioid use.  A standardized patient education protocol is a cheap and effective way of significantly decreasing postoperative opioid use.

No disclosures

Citations: AAOS 2019

Topic: Practice Management and Rehabilitation

Paper Presentation #1: Narcotic Prescribing  and Use Practices after Arthroscopic Meniscectomy

Topic: Practice Management and Rehabilitation

Paper Presentation #2: Preoperative Patient Education Significantly Decreases Postoperative Narcotic Use After Arthroscopic Meniscectomy

Date:  Wednesday, March 13th

 

 

Mar 18, 2019 @ 11:53 am

 

 

 

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