Transition to Long-Term Opioid Use High in Patients With Rheumatic Disease

TUESDAY, May 23, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- For patients living with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMD), the proportion of those initiating opioids for the first time who transition to long-term use is high, according to a research letter published online May 16 in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.

Yun-Ting Huang, Ph.D., from the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom, and colleagues examined the proportion of patients with one of six RMD conditions newly initiated on an opioid who transitioned to long-term use. Participants included 841,047 adults with a diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA), axial spondyloarthritis (AxSpA), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), osteoarthritis (OA), and fibromyalgia (12,260; 5,195; 3,046; 3,081; 796, 276; and 21,189, respectively), without prior cancer. Long-term opioid users were defined using the standard, stringent, and broad definitions.

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