St. Marie’s Article on Opioid Use Disorder Published in Comprehensive AACN Journal
Epidemic levels of chronic pain, opioid use disorder add to challenges of managing patients in pain
NEWSWISE – The combination of more Americans reporting daily chronic pain and the rapidly increasing prevalence of opioid misuse and opioid use disorder (OUD) adds to the challenges of relieving patients’ pain effectively and safely.
Most acutely and critically ill patients experience pain during their illness or injury, and pain management is essential to providing optimal care, delivering appropriate relief and preventing chronic pain with its long-term impact on quality of life.
These challenges, as well as significant gaps related to effective pain management in acutely and critically ill patients, are the focus of a series of seven articles in the winter 2019 issue of AACN Advanced Critical Care.
One of the symposium articles, “Assessing Patients’ Risk for Opioid Use Disorder,” reviews risk factors for OUD and opioid misuse, validated risk assessment tools and strategies for monitoring patients for OUD and opioid misuse.
Author Barbara St. Marie, PhD, AGPCNP, is assistant professor, College of Nursing at the University of Iowa, Iowa City.
“Opioids will always play a large role in management of acute pain. The challenge is to address urgent needs to relieve patients’ pain while preventing misuse and reducing incidents of opioid use disorder,” she said. “Patients who are prescribed opioids are increasingly concerned with the risks of using them, and healthcare providers need to be ready to answer their questions.”
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