Clinical guidelines insufficient for postoperative opioid weaning — 5 study insights

A review published in Current Pain and Headache Reports concludes research and professional guidelines don't sufficiently address postoperative opioid weaning after ambulatory surgery, Clinical Pain Advisor reports.

Here are key points from the review:

1. Ambulatory surgery setting teams must be "adept at treating varied patient populations through tailored, novel means that invoke multimodal analgesia," the authors said.

2. The study concluded more data and practice guidelines are needed to guide postoperative pain regimens for patients in the ambulatory setting.

3. Review Coauthor Brandon I. Roth, MD, of Yale-New Haven (Conn.) Hospital, told Clinical Pain Advisor the review highlights strategies to improve outcomes.

4. Clinicians should identify high-risk patients and develop a suitable pain plan, which might include multimodal analgesia, regional anesthesia, transitional pain services to manage postoperative pain or perioperative surgical homes, according to Dr. Roth.

5. He said future research should focus on applied models and their outcomes, as many medical facilities don't have the ability or infrastructure to track postoperative recovery.

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