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1.
Expert Opin Drug Discov ; 17(3): 207-210, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2212595
2.
Urogynecology (Hagerstown) ; 28(12): 872-878, 2022 Dec 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2191224

ABSTRACT

IMPORTANCE: Surgeons must individualize postoperative pain management while also reducing the amount of unused prescribed opioids. OBJECTIVES: This study compared postoperative opioid use in younger versus older women following urogynecologic surgery. We also assessed the likelihood of women returning unused opioids for safe disposal. STUDY DESIGN: This was a prospective study of women undergoing pelvic reconstructive surgery divided into 2 cohorts: younger (<65 years) and older (≥65 years). Our primary outcome was total opioid use, measured in morphine milligram equivalents (MME). We also assessed the average pain score during the first week after surgery measured by a numerical pain scale (range, 0-10). Our secondary outcome was the rate of return of unused prescribed opioids at the 6-week postoperative visit utilizing a disposable drug deactivation system. RESULTS: From April 2019 to September 2021, 152 participants were enrolled: 92 (61%) in the younger cohort (mean age, 51 ± 8 years) and 60 (39%) in the older cohort (mean age, 72 ± 6 years). For our primary outcome, younger women used significantly more opioids during the first postoperative week compared with older women (49 ± 71 vs 28 ± 40 MME, respectively, P = 0.04), despite no difference in average pain scores (4 ± 2 younger vs 3 ± 2 older, P = 0.05). For our secondary outcome, 23% of participants returned their opioids for disposal with the drug deactivation system. CONCLUSIONS: Younger women had higher postoperative opioid use despite similar pain scores after urogynecologic surgery. Among those prescribed opioids, a quarter of participants returned their opioids for disposal at their postoperative visit.


Subject(s)
Analgesics, Opioid , Opioid-Related Disorders , Female , Humans , Aged , Adult , Middle Aged , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Prospective Studies , Pain, Postoperative/drug therapy , Practice Patterns, Physicians' , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy
4.
J Subst Abuse Treat ; 141: 108850, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2180976

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: A 2012 national survey found low utilization of medication for opioid use disorder (MOUD) in US drug courts. This study provides an update on MOUD policies and practices among drug courts in communities that the opioid epidemic has substantially impacted. METHODS: The study surveyed adult drug courts (N = 169, 80 % response rate) in US counties with high opioid mortality rates or numbers of opioid-related deaths about their policies and practices relating to MOUD and the overdose-reversal medication, naloxone. RESULTS: Nearly three quarters of the programs (73 %) reported providing access to all FDA-approved MOUD medications, >90 % offer agonist medications (buprenorphine and/or methadone), 80 % provide naloxone training, and 62 % distribute naloxone overdose-reversal kits to their clients. Most programs rely principally on medical judgment for medication decisions (75 %), have received staff training on MOUD (65 %), and have arranged for clients to continue receiving agonist medications while serving jail sanctions for program violations (63 %). Nevertheless, only about one quarter to one half of clients with OUDs receive the medications in most programs, and respondents offered few explanations for this disconnect between policy and practice. In addition, 24 % of the programs continue to overrule medication decisions and 36 % of the jails in these communities do not offer agonist medication for drug court clients serving custodial sanctions. CONCLUSIONS: Programs have achieved substantial progress in the past decade in improving drug court policies concerning MOUD in communities enduring the worst brunt of the opioid epidemic; however, programs require further guidance to help them understand and rectify service barriers and put intended MOUD policies into effective operation. The authors provide recommendations to enhance MOUD utilization in drug courts and the broader criminal justice system.


Subject(s)
Buprenorphine , Opioid-Related Disorders , Adult , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Buprenorphine/therapeutic use , Humans , Naloxone/therapeutic use , Opiate Substitution Treatment , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy , Opioid-Related Disorders/epidemiology
5.
Am Fam Physician ; 106(1): 61-69, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2156674

ABSTRACT

This article summarizes the top 20 research studies of 2021 identified as POEMs (patient-oriented evidence that matters) that did not address the COVID-19 pandemic. Sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists prevent adverse cardiovascular and renal outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus and also reduce all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. Most older adults (mean age, 75 years) with prediabetes do not progress to diabetes. Among patients in this age group with type 2 diabetes treated with medication, an A1C level of less than 7% is associated with increased risk of hospitalization for hypoglycemia, especially when using a sulfonylurea or insulin. For patients with chronic low back pain, exercise, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, duloxetine, and opioids were shown to be more effective than control in achieving a 30% reduction in pain, but self-discontinuation of duloxetine and opioids was common. There is no clinically important difference between muscle relaxants and placebo in the treatment of nonspecific low back pain. In patients with chronic pain, low- to moderate-quality evidence supports exercise, yoga, massage, and mindfulness-based stress reduction. For acute musculoskeletal pain, acetaminophen, 1,000 mg, plus ibuprofen, 400 mg, without an opioid is a good option. Regarding screening for colorectal cancer, trial evidence supports performing fecal immunochemical testing every other year. For chronic constipation, evidence supports polyethylene glycol, senna, fiber supplements, magnesium-based products, and fruit-based products. The following abdominal symptoms carry a greater than 3% risk of cancer or inflammatory bowel disease: dysphagia or change in bowel habits in men; rectal bleeding in women; and abdominal pain, change in bowel habits, or dyspepsia in men and women older than 60 years. For secondary prevention in those with established arteriosclerotic cardiovascular disease, 81 mg of aspirin daily appears to be effective. The Framingham Risk Score and the Pooled Cohort Equations both overestimate the risk of cardiovascular events. Over 12 years, no association between egg consumption and cardiovascular events was demonstrated. Gabapentin, pregabalin, duloxetine, and venlafaxine provide clinically meaningful improvements in chronic neuropathic pain. In patients with moderate to severe depression, initial titration above the minimum starting dose of antidepressants in the first eight weeks of treatment is not more likely to increase response. In adults with iron deficiency anemia, adding vitamin C to oral iron has no effect. In children with pharyngitis, rhinosinusitis, acute bronchitis, or acute otitis media, providing education combined with a take-and-hold antibiotic prescription results in 1 in 4 of those children eventually taking an antibiotic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cardiovascular Diseases , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 , Low Back Pain , Physicians, Primary Care , Sodium-Glucose Transporter 2 Inhibitors , Aged , Analgesics, Opioid , Anti-Bacterial Agents , COVID-19/complications , Child , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/complications , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/drug therapy , Duloxetine Hydrochloride , Female , Humans , Male , Pandemics , Physicians, Primary Care/education
6.
J Pharmacol Exp Ther ; 381(2): 129-136, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2152871

ABSTRACT

The incidence of fatal drug overdoses in the United States is an alarming public health threat that has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in over 100,000 deaths between April 2020 and April 2021. A significant portion of this is attributable to widespread access to fentanyl and other synthetic opioids, alone or in combination with heroin or psychostimulants, such as cocaine or methamphetamine. Monoclonal antibodies (mAb) offer prophylactic and therapeutic interventions against opioid overdose by binding opioids in serum, reducing distribution of drug to the brain and other organs. Here, we investigated the efficacy of a leading antifentanyl mAb, clone HY6-F9, in reversal and prevention of fentanyl-induced toxicity compared with the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone (NLX) in rats. In postexposure models, rats were challenged with fentanyl, followed by HY6-F9, NLX, or both. HY6-F9 reversed fentanyl-induced antinociception, respiratory depression, and bradycardia, and rats retained protection against additional challenges for at least 1 week. Although intravenous NLX reversed fentanyl-induced respiratory depression more rapidly than mAb alone, kinetics of reversal by intravenous mAb were similar to subcutaneous NLX. Coadministration of mAb and NLX provided greater protection than individual treatments against high doses of fentanyl. Prophylactic administration of mAb reduced the ED50 of NLX approximately twofold against 2.25 mg/kg of fentanyl. Finally, mAb sequestered fentanyl and its metabolite norfentanyl in serum and reduced brain concentrations of fentanyl. These results support the translation of mAb as medical interventions alone or in combination with NLX to prevent and reverse fentanyl-related overdose. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT: Fentanyl-related overdoses have increased dramatically in the US and worldwide. Currently, approved pharmacotherapies for treatment of opioid use disorder and reversal of overdose are not sufficient to curb the incidence of opioid-related deaths. Additionally, fentanyl and its potent analogs present a potential risk from use in deliberate poisoning or chemical attacks. This study demonstrates the use of monoclonal antibodies as a countermeasure to fentanyl-induced toxicity in pre- and postexposure scenarios, supporting their use in combination with the opioid antagonist naloxone.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drug Overdose , Respiratory Insufficiency , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/pharmacology , Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Drug Overdose/drug therapy , Fentanyl , Humans , Naloxone/pharmacology , Naloxone/therapeutic use , Narcotic Antagonists/pharmacology , Pandemics , Rats , Respiratory Insufficiency/drug therapy
7.
PLoS One ; 17(11): e0278072, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2140684

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has led the Canadian provincial governments to take unprecedented measures, including restrictions to healthcare services and pharmacists. Limited evidence exists on changes in prescription trends in Canada during the pandemic period. OBJECTIVES: To examine the trend of prescription medications' utilization before and during COVID-19, among incident and prevalent users in the general population. We examined 18 major classes of medications. METHODS: We used the administrative health databases from the province of Manitoba, Canada, to conduct a province-wide cross-sectional study. Incident and prevalent use was compared between two time periods; pre-COVID-19: July 2016-March 2020 and during COVID-19: April 2020-March 2021. Interrupted time series analysis using autoregressive models was used to quantify the change in level and slope in quarterly medication use among incident and prevalent users. RESULTS: The quarterly study population ranged from 1,353,485 to 1,411,630 Manitobans. The most common comorbidities were asthma (26.67%), hypertension (20.64%), and diabetes (8.31%). On average, the pandemic restrictions resulted in a 45.55% and 12.17% relative decline in the aggregated utilization of all drugs among both incident and prevalent users, respectively. Subclass analysis showed a 46.83%, 23.05%, and 30.98% relative drop among incident users of antibiotics, cardiovascular drugs and opioids use, respectively. We observed a significant slope increase during COVID-19 among the quarterly cardiovascular, antidiabetics, alpha-1 blockers, and statins incident users compared to the pre-COVID-19 period. We noted a significant decrease in level among NSAIDs, opioids, and antibiotic prevalent users, however, no significant changes in slope were observed. CONCLUSION: Our findings show a significant impact of COVID-19 measures on prescription trends in the general population. The observed decline among several medication classes was temporary. Further research is needed to monitor prescription trends and better understand if those changes were associated with increased health services and worsened outcomes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Manitoba/epidemiology , Canada , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Cross-Sectional Studies , Drug Utilization , Analgesics, Opioid
8.
Subst Abuse Treat Prev Policy ; 17(1): 76, 2022 Nov 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2139358

ABSTRACT

Nevada, like the rest of the United States, is undergoing substantial challenges with opioid misuse and overdose deaths, further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. While much of the attention around opioid overdose prevention is centered on treatment and recovery, it is important to understand the factors that influence initiation of use, and the function opioids play in people's everyday lives. We conducted qualitative semi-structured individual interviews using purposive and snowball sampling among 35 people across Nevada with a current or prior history of illegal opioid or nonmedical opioid use. Our study aimed to understand why people start to use drugs, why they continue to use, what motivates them to continue to use or to seek treatment, and why individuals maintain recovery or return to use. We found five significant themes as perceived by the participants: that trauma is a risk factor for drug misuse; that the function of opioids in everyday life is a source of temporary relief but highly disruptive in the longer term; that recovery is most often a complicated and nonlinear process; that there are many barriers to accessing services that are both logistical and psychosocial; and that compassion, hope, and having a sense of purpose are crucial to the recovery process. The experiences of the study participants portray opioid use as a rational choice to escape the emotional ramifications of trauma. However, due to the physiological dependence and physical risk of opioids, drug policies that criminalize addiction, societal stigma, and the barriers to timely access of harm reduction, treatment, and recovery services, opioid users often become trapped in a distressing and dangerous cycle. Lastly, respondents indicated that hope, value, belonging, and purpose are powerful factors in cultivating intrinsic motivation for making positive changes and fostering resilience in the recovery process. Opioid misuse services should help meet basic needs and incorporate holistic approaches to recovery that acknowledge past trauma and the complexity of the recovery process.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Opioid-Related Disorders , Humans , United States , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Nevada , Pandemics , Opioid-Related Disorders/epidemiology
9.
J Addict Med ; 16(6): 645-652, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2117148

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: We sought to understand how opioid treatment programs (OTPs) adapted OTP operations to the COVID-19 pandemic and new federal regulations around methadone and buprenorphine. METHODS: In fall 2020, we conducted an online survey of all 103 OTPs licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, including clinical directors. Survey domains included changes to methadone take-home and telehealth practices; overdose and diversion prevention tactics; perceptions regarding how such changes influence patient well-being; and financial/operational concerns related to the new policies and practices. We calculated descriptive statistics and conducted Chi-square test to test for differences between not-for-profit versus for-profit and large versus small OTPs. RESULTS: Forty-seven percent (46%) OTPs responded to the survey. 10% and 25%, respectively, endorsed offering telephone and video-based telemedicine buprenorphine induction. Sixty-six percent endorsed extending take-home supplies of methadone, but most indicated that these extensions applied to a minority of their patients. Most respondents agreed that provision of buprenorphine via telehealth and extended take-home methadone reduced patient burden in accessing medications and prevented exposure to COVID-19, while not significantly increasing risk of overdose. We did not find major differences in COVID-19 practice modifications by nonprofit status or size of OTP. CONCLUSIONS: In Pennsylvania, the COVID-19 pandemic led to rapid changes in provision of opioid treatment services. Findings on relatively low uptake of longer methadone take-home regimens and virtual buprenorphine initiation despite general support for these practices imply a need to further develop guidelines for best clinical practices and understand/address barriers to their implementation.


Subject(s)
Buprenorphine , COVID-19 , Drug Overdose , Opioid-Related Disorders , Humans , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Opiate Substitution Treatment , Opioid-Related Disorders/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pennsylvania/epidemiology , Methadone/therapeutic use , Buprenorphine/therapeutic use , Drug Overdose/drug therapy , Surveys and Questionnaires
10.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(22)2022 Nov 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2116016

ABSTRACT

The devastating impact of the opioid crisis on children and families in West Virginia was compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic and brought to light the critical need for greater mental health services and providers in the state. Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) is an evidence-based treatment for child externalizing symptoms that teaches parents positive and appropriate strategies to manage child behaviors. The current qualitative study details barriers and facilitators to disseminating and implementing PCIT with opioid-impacted families across West Virginia during the COVID-19 pandemic. Therapists (n = 34) who participated in PCIT training and consultation through a State Opioid Response grant were asked to provide data about their experiences with PCIT training, consultation, and implementation. Almost all therapists (91%) reported barriers to telehealth PCIT (e.g., poor internet connection, unpredictability of sessions). Nearly half of therapists' cases (45%) were impacted directly by parental substance use. Qualitative findings about the impact of telehealth and opioid use on PCIT implementation are presented. The dissemination and implementation of PCIT in a state greatly impacted by poor telehealth capacity and the opioid epidemic differed from the implementation of PCIT training and treatment delivery in other states, highlighting the critical importance of exploring implementation factors in rural settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Opioid Epidemic , West Virginia/epidemiology , Pandemics , Parent-Child Relations
11.
Int J Drug Policy ; 104: 103670, 2022 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2115273

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The United Kingdom (UK) is currently experiencing a public health crisis of drug-related deaths. The government has rejected recommendations to open overdose prevention services, under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. To report on the operation and use of an unsanctioned overdose prevention service which operated in Glasgow city centre from September 2020 to May 2021. METHODS: Description of the service, with analysis of data collected on its use. RESULTS: The service operated for nine months without permission or funding from official sources. We report on the 894 injections supervised and recorded, and nine successful interventions with overdose events (seven opioid/two cocaine). Powder cocaine injection predominated either alone (60.6%) or with heroin (22.1%). Injection was mostly in the groin (68.0%) or arm (16.8%). More injections were recorded by males (70.1%). Around 65% of injection events featured an individual who was on a buprenorphine/methadone prescription. CONCLUSION: It is feasible for an overdose prevention service to operate successfully in the UK without being shut down by the police or with negative consequences for the community. Future sites in the UK must tailor to the substances used by their potential clients, international trends (e.g. for fentanyl use) did not apply here. There is an urgent need and demand for these services in the UK to reduce harm, prevent and intervene during overdose, and provide vital psychosocial support for health and wellbeing in a highly marginalised population.


Subject(s)
Cocaine , Drug Overdose , Opioid-Related Disorders , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Drug Overdose/drug therapy , Drug Overdose/epidemiology , Drug Overdose/prevention & control , Fentanyl , Humans , Male , Opioid-Related Disorders/epidemiology
12.
Mo Med ; 119(3): 229-236, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2112080

ABSTRACT

Synopsis Patients with non-cancer pain reported increased pain and pain interference during the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic. We determined if pain, prescription opioid use, and comorbidities were associated with perceived COVID-19-related stress as the pandemic peaked. Analysis of survey data revealed that depression/anxiety, pain severity, and pain interference were most strongly and consistently associated with greater stress due to COVID-19 related changes in lifestyle, worsening of emotional/mental health and worsening pain. Identifying specific stressful experiences that most impacted patients with non-cancer pain may help target public health and treatment interventions. Background: During the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic, patients with chronic pain reported increased pain severity and interference. This study measured the association between pain, prescription opioid use, and comorbidities with perceived COVID-19-related stress as the pandemic peaked in the United States. Methods: From 9/2020 to 3/2021, the first 149 subjects from a prospective cohort study of non-cancer pain, completed a survey which contained the Complementary and Integrative Research (CAIR) Pandemic Impact Questionnaire (C-PIQ). Respondents also reported whether the pandemic has contributed to their pain or opioid use. Bivariate comparisons explored patient characteristics with each CAIR domain. Results: Respondents mean age was 54.6 (±11.3) years, 69.8% were female, 64.6% were White. Respondent characteristics were not associated with reading/watching/thinking about the pandemic or with worry about health. Depression/anxiety (p=0.003), using any prescription opioid in the prior three months (p=0.009), higher morphine milligram equivalent used (p=0.005), higher pain severity (p=0.011), and higher pain interference (p=0.0004) were all positively and significantly associated with moderate to severe stress due to COVID-19 related lifestyle changes. Depression/anxiety, pain severity, and pain interference were positively associated with COVID-19-related worsening emotional/mental health. Depression/anxiety were significantly (p<0.0001) associated with reporting that the pandemic made their pain worse. Conclusion: Depression, anxiety, pain severity, and pain interference were most strongly and consistently associated with COVID-19 changes in way of life, worsening of emotional/mental health, and worsening pain. Identifying specific stressful experiences that most impacted patients with noncancer pain may inform public health and treatment interventions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Chronic Pain , Analgesics, Opioid , Depression , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , United States
13.
J Subst Abuse Treat ; 143: 108896, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2105480

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Methadone is one of the most utilized treatments for opioid use disorder. However, requirements for observing methadone dosing can impose barriers to patients and increase risk for respiratory illness transmission (e.g., COVID-19). Video observation of methadone dosing at home could allow opioid treatment programs (OTPs) to offer more take-home doses while ensuring patient safety through remote observation of ingestion. METHODS: Between April and August 2020, a clinical pilot program of video observation of methadone take-home dosing via smartphone was conducted within a multisite OTP agency. Participating patients completed a COVID-19 symptom screener and submitted video recordings of themselves ingesting all methadone take-home doses. Patients who followed these procedures for a two-week trial period could continue participating in the full pilot program and potentially receive more take-home doses. This retrospective observational study characterizes patient engagement and compares clinical outcomes with matched controls. RESULTS: Of 44 patients who initiated the two-week trial, 33 (75 %) were successful and continued participating in the full pilot program. Twenty full pilot participants (61 %) received increased take-home doses. Full pilot participants had more days with observed dosing over a 60-day period than matched controls (mean = 53.2 vs. 16.6 days, respectively). Clinical outcomes were similar between pilot participants and matched controls. CONCLUSIONS: Video observation of methadone take-home dosing implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic was feasible. This model has the potential to enhance safety by increasing rates of observed methadone dosing and reducing infection risks and barriers associated with relying solely on face-to-face observation of methadone dosing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Opioid-Related Disorders , Humans , Methadone , Pandemics , Feasibility Studies , Pilot Projects , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy , Opioid-Related Disorders/rehabilitation , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Opiate Substitution Treatment/methods
14.
Subst Use Misuse ; 57(14): 2142-2145, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2097094

ABSTRACT

Background: Accidental opioid-involved overdose deaths are increasing nationally in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it is unclear if this reflects a change in populations most at risk. Objective: To determine whether the demographic characteristics and controlled substance prescription history of accidental opioid-involved drug overdose decedents in 2020 differed from prior years. Methods: We identified accidental opioid-involved overdose decedents using Rhode Island (RI) State Medical Examiner's Office data. Decedents were linked to the RI Prescription Drug Monitoring Program database. We compared demographic characteristics and prescription history by year of death. Results: From 2018 to 2020, 763 RI residents died from accidental opioid-involved overdose in RI. From 2018 to 2019, deaths decreased by 7%, but then increased by 31% from 2019 to 2020. Demographic characteristics were similar by year of death (all p > 0.05). The percentage of decedents with a prior opioid prescription and a prior benzodiazepine prescription declined from 2018 to 2020 (p < 0.01 and p = 0.03). Conclusions: We found that opioid-involved overdose deaths in RI are increasing overall, but without significant changes in demographics. While prior exposure to some controlled substances did decline over time, it is not clear if these changes reflect more responsible prescribing practices, or a more concerning pattern such as patient abandonment or decreased healthcare access. More studies are needed to better describe the current trend of increasing opioid-involved deaths while also pursuing current evidence-based interventions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drug Overdose , Opiate Overdose , Humans , Analgesics, Opioid , Controlled Substances , Rhode Island/epidemiology , Pandemics , Drug Overdose/epidemiology , Prescriptions
15.
PLoS One ; 17(10): e0274094, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2089400

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To understand patient experience of federal regulatory changes governing methadone and buprenorphine (MOUD) access in Arizona during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: This community-based participatory and action research study involved one-hour, audio-recorded field interviews conducted with 131 people who used methadone and/or buprenorphine to address opioid use disorder at some point during COVID (January 1, 2020- March 31, 2021) in Arizona. Transcribed data were analyzed using a priori codes focused on federally recommended flexibilities governing MOUD access. Data were quantitated to investigate associations with COVID risk and services access. RESULTS: Telehealth was reported by 71.0% of participants, but the majority were required to come to the clinic to attend video appointments with an offsite provider. Risk for severe COVID outcomes was reported by 40.5% of the sample. Thirty-eight percent of the sample and 39.7% of methadone patients were required to be at the clinic daily to get medication and 47.6% were at high risk for COVID severe outcomes. About half (54.2%) of methadone patients indicated that some form of multi-day take home dosing was offered at their clinic, and 45.8% were offered an extra day or two of multi-day doses; but no participants received the federally allowed 14- or 28-day methadone take-home doses for unstable and stable patients respectively. All participants expressed that daily clinic visits interrupted their work and home lives and desired more take-home dosing and home delivery options. CONCLUSIONS: MOUD patients in Arizona were not offered many of the federally allowed flexibilities for access that were designed to reduce their need to be at the clinic. To understand the impact of these recommended treatment changes in Arizona, and other states where they were not well implemented, federal and state regulators must mandate these changes and support MOUD providers to implement them.


Subject(s)
Buprenorphine , COVID-19 , Opioid-Related Disorders , Humans , Buprenorphine/therapeutic use , Methadone/therapeutic use , Opiate Substitution Treatment , Pandemics , Arizona/epidemiology , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/epidemiology , Opioid-Related Disorders/epidemiology , Patient Outcome Assessment , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use
16.
Surg Endosc ; 36(11): 7898-7914, 2022 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2085378

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: As enhanced recovery programs (ERPs) have continued to evolve, the length of hospitalization (LOS) following elective minimally invasive colorectal surgery has continued to decline. Further refinements in multimodal perioperative pain management strategies have resulted in reduced opioid consumption. The interest in ambulatory colectomy has dramatically accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic. Severe restrictions in hospital capacity and fear of COVID transmission forced surgical teams to rethink strategies to further reduce length of inpatient stay. METHODS: Members of the SAGES Colorectal Surgery Committee began reviewing the emergence of SDD protocols and early publications for SDD in 2019. The authors met at regular intervals during 2020-2022 period reviewing SDD protocols, safe patient selection criteria, surrogates for postoperative monitoring, and early outcomes. RESULTS: Early experience with SDD protocols for elective, minimally invasive colorectal surgery suggests that SDD is feasible and safe in well-selected patients and procedures. SDD protocols are associated with reduced opioid use and prescribing. Patient perception and experience with SDD is favourable. For early adopters, SDD has been the natural evolution of well-developed ERPs. Like all ERPs, SDD begins in the office setting, identifying the correct patient and procedure, aligning goals and objectives, and the perioperative education of the patient and their supporting significant others. A thorough discussion with the patient regarding expected activity levels, oral intake, and pain control post operatively lays the foundation for a successful application of SDD programs. These observations may not apply to all patient populations, institutions, practice types, or within the scope of an existing ERP. However, if the underlying principles of SDD can be incorporated into an existing institutional ERP, it may further reduce the incidence of post operative ileus, prolonged LOS, and improve the effectiveness of oral analgesia for postoperative pain management and reduced opioid use and prescribing. CONCLUSIONS: The SAGES Colorectal Surgery Committee has performed a comprehensive review of the early experience with SDD. This manuscript summarizes SDD early results and considerations for safe and stepwise implementation of SDD with a specific focus on ERP evolution, patient selection, remote monitoring, and other relevant considerations based on hospital settings and surgical practices.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Colorectal Neoplasms , Colorectal Surgery , Humans , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Colectomy/methods , Colorectal Neoplasms/epidemiology , Colorectal Surgery/methods , Length of Stay , Pandemics , Patient Discharge , Patient Selection , Postoperative Complications/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies
17.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(21)2022 Oct 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2082064

ABSTRACT

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States was facing an epidemic of opioid overdose deaths, clouding accurate inferences about the impact of the pandemic at the population level. We sought to determine the existence of increases in the trends of opioid-related overdose (ORO) deaths in the Greater Houston metropolitan area from January 2015 through December 2021, and to describe the social vulnerability present in the geographic location of these deaths. We merged records from the county medical examiner's office with social vulnerability indexes (SVIs) for the region and present geospatial locations of the aggregated ORO deaths. Time series analyses were conducted to determine trends in the deaths, with a specific focus on the years 2019 to 2021. A total of 2660 deaths were included in the study and the mean (standard deviation, SD) age at death was 41.04 (13.60) years. Heroin and fentanyl were the most frequent opioids detected, present in 1153 (43.35%) and 1023 (38.46%) ORO deaths. We found that ORO deaths increased during the years 2019 to 2021 (p-value ≤ 0.001) when compared with 2015. Compared to the year 2019, ORO deaths increased for the years 2020 and 2021 (p-value ≤ 0.001). The geographic locations of ORO deaths were not associated with differences in the SVI. The COVID-19 pandemic had an impact on increasing ORO deaths in the metropolitan Houston area; however, identifying the determinants to guide targeted interventions in the areas of greatest need may require other factors, in addition to community-level social vulnerability parameters.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drug Overdose , Opiate Overdose , United States , Humans , Adult , Analgesics, Opioid , Opiate Overdose/epidemiology , Texas/epidemiology , Pandemics
18.
Harm Reduct J ; 19(1): 114, 2022 10 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2079429

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Opioid overdose response training (OORT) and the need for its rapid expansion have become more significant as the opioid epidemic continues to be a health crisis in the USA. Limitation of funding and stigmatization often hinders expansion of OORT programs. Primarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been widespread transition from in-person to virtual communication. However, OORT programs may benefit from long-term use of this modality of education if it can be as effective. OBJECTIVE: To measure the change in participant attitude after a brief, virtual OORT. METHODS: A 6.5-min OORT video explained recognition of opioid overdose, appropriate response and proper administration of intranasal naloxone. Pre- and post-video scores from a 19-item survey were used to determine the video's impact on participants' self-perceived competence and readiness to administer naloxone to a person with a suspected opioid overdose. Paired t tests were used in the analysis of pre- and post-video scores. Mann-Whitney U and Kruskal-Wallis H testing were used to compare variance between several demographic subgroups of interest. RESULTS: A sample of 219 participants had a significant mean difference of 15.12 (SD 9.48; 95% CI 13.86-16.39, p < 0.001) between pre- and posttest scores. Improvements were found to be greatest in content-naïve participants with lower levels of education and non-health care-related jobs than participants endorsing previous content awareness, formal naloxone training, masters, doctorate or professional degrees and health care-related jobs. CONCLUSION: This pilot study demonstrated encouraging evidence that a brief, virtual, pre-recorded educational intervention improved participant-rated competence and readiness to administer intranasal naloxone in a suspected opioid overdose. Due to scalability and ability to overcome common healthcare accessibility barriers, short-form videos focused on key facts about naloxone and the benefits of its use could be part of a strategy for rapid expansion of OORT programs to mitigate opioid overdose fatalities.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drug Overdose , Opiate Overdose , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Drug Overdose/drug therapy , Drug Overdose/prevention & control , Humans , Naloxone/therapeutic use , Narcotic Antagonists/therapeutic use , Pandemics , Pilot Projects
20.
Afr J Prim Health Care Fam Med ; 14(1): e1-e9, 2022 Sep 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2066809

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has highlighted the scope of heroin dependence and need for evidence-based treatment amongst marginalised people in South Africa. Acute opioid withdrawal management without maintenance therapy carries risks of increased morbidity and mortality. Due to the high costs of methadone, Tshwane's Community Oriented Substance Use Programme (COSUP) used tramadol for opioid withdrawal management during the initial COVID-19 response. AIM: To describe demographics, route of heroin administration and medication-related experiences amongst people accessing tramadol for treatment of opioid withdrawal. SETTING: Three community-based COSUP sites in Mamelodi (Tshwane, South Africa). METHODS: A retrospective cross-sectional study was conducted. Data were collected using an interviewer-administered paper-based tool between April and August 2020. Descriptive statistics were used to analyse data. RESULTS: Of the 220 service users initiated onto tramadol, almost half (n = 104, 47%) were not contactable. Fifty-eight (26%) people participated, amongst whom most were male (n = 55, 95%). Participants' median age was 32 years. Most participants injected heroin (n = 36, 62.1%). Most participants experienced at least one side effect (n = 47, 81%) with 37 (64%) experiencing two or more side effects from tramadol. Insomnia occurred most frequently (n = 26, 45%). One person without a history of seizures experienced a seizure. Opioid withdrawal symptoms were experienced by 54 participants (93%) whilst taking tramadol. Over half (n = 38, 66%) reported using less heroin whilst on tramadol. CONCLUSION: Tramadol reduced heroin use but was associated with withdrawal symptoms and unfavourable side effects. Findings point to the limitations of tramadol as opioid withdrawal management to retain people in care and the importance of access to first-line opioid agonists.Contribution: This research contributes to the limited data around short-acting tramadol for opioid withdrawal management in the African context, with specific focus on the need for increased access to opioid agonists for those who need them, in primary care settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Substance Withdrawal Syndrome , Tramadol , Adult , Analgesics, Opioid/adverse effects , Communicable Disease Control , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Heroin/adverse effects , Humans , Male , Methadone/therapeutic use , Narcotics/adverse effects , Retrospective Studies , Substance Withdrawal Syndrome/diagnosis , Substance Withdrawal Syndrome/drug therapy , Substance Withdrawal Syndrome/rehabilitation , Tramadol/therapeutic use
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