| Anesthesiology

New Program: Led By Anesthesiologists

Reducing Postop Opioids

In Australia, “Hospitalisations and deaths related to opioid overuse, misuse, or overdose increased by 240% and 180%, respectively, with a corresponding 32-fold increase in yearly public health costs to $271 million AUD within the past 2 decades.” After implementing a single anesthesiologist-led perioperative pain service called POPPMED—perioperative pain management, education, and de-escalation—researchers published their retrospective cohort study findings in Pain Reports. Over 100 patients treated with 50mg oral morphine equivalent daily dosages (OMEDD) preoperatively were provided with behavioral interventions, opioid reductions/rotations, and/or ketamine in order to receive the lowest opioids doses at discharge.

The service identified, preoperatively, patients with risk factors for opioid escalation, including:

  • Active preexisting opioid prescription
  • Chronic pain
  • Recreational drug use
  • Opioid replacement therapy.

The study concluded, “POPPMED achieved sustained OMEDD reductions safely in an older, high-risk opioid tolerant population, with analgesia comparable to a non-POPPMED cohort, and surgery specific effects on length of stay.”


Read the journal article.

Holly Caster