Patterns of use and factors associated with early discontinuation of opioids following major trauma

Document Type



General Surgery


Background: Inappropriate use of prescription opioids is a growing public-health issue. We sought to estimate the proportion of traumatic injury patients using legal prescription opioids up to 1-year after hospitalization.
Methods: We used 2006-2014 claims data from TRICARE insurance to identify adults hospitalized secondary to trauma between 2007 and 2013. Prescription opioid use was evaluated for one-year post-discharge. Risk-adjusted Cox Proportional-hazards models were used to evaluate predictors of opioid discontinuation.
Results: Only 1% of patients sustained legal prescription opioid use at 1-year following trauma. Lower socioeconomic status (HR 0.92, 95% CI 0.87-0.98) and higher injury severity (HR 0.88, 95% CI 0.84-0.91) were associated with sustained use. Younger patients (HR 1.12, 95% CI 1.04-1.21) and Black patients (HR 1.09, 95% CI 1.04-1.15) were found to have a higher likelihood of opioid discontinuation.
Conclusions: In this population, adult patients who sustained trauma were not at high risk of sustained legal prescription opioid use.


This work was published before the author joined Aga Khan University

Publication (Name of Journal)

American journal of surgery