Prescription opioids are commonly unused after ambulatory head and neck surgeries: Opioids prescription presence and size has no effect on patient satisfaction with pain control

Ahmad Elsharydah, Sadia Y. Karani, Tanushri Pothini, Kevin H. Truong, David J. Shu, Kinnari V. Ruikar, Tinh Huynh, Coby K. Tran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: To explore the opioid prescribing practices after common ambulatory head and neck surgeries in a large academic institution; and to examine the association between opioid prescription and the patient's satisfaction with pain control. Methods: This retrospective cohort study conducted in a tertiary academic medical center. Phone interviews of patients who underwent ambulatory head and neck surgeries one month after their procedures were conducted. The interview included, among several questions, the amount of opioid prescribed and consumed, the use of non-opioid pain medications, and the patient's satisfaction with pain control. Logistic regression models were used to investigate the significant factors affecting the patient's satisfaction with pain control. Results: Most patients were prescribed opioids at discharge (84%). Of those, 17% did not use their prescriptions. The median of leftover opioid was 76.50 morphine milligram equivalents (MMEs) with IQR (45–130.95). Patient satisfaction with pain control is not associated with opioid prescription at discharge (OR 0.195 [95% CL, 0.036–1.036], p = 0.059) or the amount of the prescribed opioid (OR 1.001 [95% CL, 0.997–1.004], p = 0.717) after controlling for other patient and procedural factors. Conclusion: A significant portion of ambulatory head and neck surgery patients were discharged with opioid prescriptions they may not use. Patient satisfaction with pain control is not associated with the presence or the amount of opioid prescribed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number103093
JournalAmerican Journal of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Medicine and Surgery
Volume42
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2021

Keywords

  • Head and neck surgery
  • Opioids
  • Overprescribing
  • Pain control
  • Patient satisfaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology

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