A recent study by Michigan OPEN suggests that opioid use after surgery might not be due to pain from operations. Dr. Chad Brummett, Co-director of Michigan OPEN and the study lead, states that “chronic opioid use after surgery may be one of the most common complications after surgery.” In addition to this, the study found that having a history of chronic pain was a better predictor of post-operative opioid use than the type of surgery the patient had, with those patients being 50 percent more likely to abuse opioids. Alcohol and substance abuse disorders also increased the odds of abusing opioids by 34 percent. Their findings go on to suggest that patients continue to use opioids for reasons other than pain.
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