Relationship Between Opioid Use and Patient Satisfaction Explored

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Findings strongest with higher opioid use among patients with musculoskeletal conditions
Findings strongest with higher opioid use among patients with musculoskeletal conditions

HealthDay News — Patients with musculoskeletal conditions who are using prescribed opioids are more likely to be highly satisfied with their care, according to a study published in the January/February issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

Brian D. Sites, MD, from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues used data from the 2008 to 2014 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey to assess whether prescription opioid use is associated with satisfaction with care among 19,566 U.S. adults who had musculoskeletal conditions. 

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The researchers found that 13.1% of patients with musculoskeletal conditions were opioid users, defined as receiving at least 1 prescription in two 6-month time periods. Opioid users were more likely to report high satisfaction with care (odds ratio, 1.32), compared to nonusers when adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics and health status. A stronger association was witnessed with increasing level of opioid use (odds ratios with moderate opioid use and heavy opioid use, 1.55 and 1.43, respectively; P<0.001 for trend).

"Among patients with musculoskeletal conditions, those using prescription opioids are more likely to be highly satisfied with their care," the authors write. "Considering that emerging reimbursement models include patient satisfaction, future work is warranted to better understand this relationship."

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