Opioids Overprescribed for Common Children’s Fracture, Study Says



Overprescription includes giving kids too many opioids when they are sent home -- raising the risk that any leftover meds will be "diverted" for illicit use.

"This study suggests that orthopedic surgeons really need to think about our current prescribing practices and how we can help decrease the potential for overprescription and opioid diversion," said study author Dr. Apurva Shah. He's an orthopedic surgeon at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

The study included 81 patients, average age about 6 years, who had surgery for the most common type of elbow fracture in children.

On average, they took only 24 percent of prescribed opioid painkillers. Opioids include drugs such as OxyContin and Vicodin.

Eighteen patients did not take any opioid medications after they left the hospital, and 18 took over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Only 11 patients were taking any type of pain medication 10 days after surgery. By day 14, six patients were taking OTC pain medications, and by day 21, only four still used them, according to the study.

The finding that patients used an average of less than 25 percent of prescribed opioid medications suggests the potential risk of opioid overprescribing, which contributes to the nation's opioid epidemic. For example, they said research has found that about 40 percent of teens misusing opioids obtained them from leftover prescriptions.

The researchers noted that more than half of all opioid prescriptions in the United States are written for patients discharged by orthopedic surgeons. And the authors believe fewer pills can be prescribed.

"Based on this study, which we believe can be applied to other common types of orthopedic injuries, a prescription for a much shorter period of time seems to be appropriate," Shah said in a hospital news release.

The study authors also suggested that researchers should determine whether non-opioid pain medications are as effective as opioids in managing pain for patients with these common childhood injuries.

The findings were recently published online in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery.

More information

The American Academy of Pediatrics has more on opioids.


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Chop surgeons find opioids often overprescribed for elbow



Reviewed by, james Ives, MPsych, jan 17 2019, state Prisons Need More Smoking-Cessation Programs: Study opioid drugs prescribed to children for pain relief after a typical pediatric orthopaedic procedure may be significantly overprescribed, according to a new study by researchers at Children's Hospital of fertility Treatments Tied to Higher Odds for Pregnancy Complications Philadelphia (chop). The authors also suggest a prospective study to investigate whether non-narcotic analgesic medications are as effective in teens Often Off the Mark About Their Weight, With Unhealthy Results managing pain for patients who experience these common childhood injuries. Share on: thursday, June 8, 2017 (HealthDay News)Women are routinely prescribed more opioid painkillers than they need after Cesarean sections, creating a high risk for misuse, a trio of new studies suggests. Additionally, 18 patients reported not taking any opioid medications after they were discharged, while 18 patients also reported that they had taken over-the-counter (OTC) medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Share, comments: (0 tell-a-Friend, monday, Feb. For opioid use, the interquartile range was one to seven doses and patients used only.1 percent of prescribed opioids (mean,.8 doses used and.8 doses prescribed). Treatment for...

Terplan, associate director of addiction medicine at Virginia Commonwealth surge in Long-Term Birth Control After Trump’s 2016 Win University in Richmond, said patients have a responsibility to ask questions and be sure they understand their treatment. Apurva Shah,.D., from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and colleagues prospectively followed 81 children (62 percent male; mean age,.1 years) who underwent closed reduction and percutaneous pinning of supracondylar humerus fractures at a single pediatric trauma center. "It's not saying everybody gets 90 Oxycontins or seven Oxycontins, it's actually involving the patient in her own decision-making.". The decrease in postoperative opioids paralleled a decrease in reported pain. To that end, how many pills are prescribed varies from provider to provider, the researchers added.