Purpose: To describe opioid use before and after intensive care unit (ICU) admission and to identify factors associated with chronic opioid use upto 4 years after ICU discharge.
Methods: Retrospective review of adult patients admitted to the ICU at a tertiary care center between January 1, 2005, to December 31, 2008. We defined “nonuser,” “intermittent,” and “chronic” opioid status by abstinence, use in 70% of days for a given time period, respectively. We assessed opioid use at 3 months prior to ICU admission, at discharge, and annually for upto 4 years following ICU discharge.
Results: A total of 2595 ICU patients were included for surgical (48.6%), medical (38.4%), and undetermined (13%) indications. The study population included both elective (26.9%) and emergent (73.1%) admissions. Three months prior to ICU admission, 76.9% were nonusers, 16.9% used opioids intermittently, and 6.2% used opioids chronically. We found an increase in nonuser patients from 87.8% in the early post-ICU period to 95.6% at 48-month follow-up. Consequently, intermittent and chronic opioid use dropped to 8.6% and 3.6% at discharge and 2.6% and 1.8% at 48-month follow-up, respectively. Prolonged hospital length of stay was associated with chronic opioid use.
Conclusion: Admission to ICU and duration of ICU stay were not associated with chronic opioid use.
This research was published in the August 2017 issue of “Journal of Intensive Care Medicine” by Yaffe, Green, Buttler and Witter. Library members can order the full text of this and other articles via the Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust Library and Knowledge Service website using the article requests online via this link