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Education, Depression, Pain Associated With Opioid Misuse

Illicit drug use also a significant predictor of misuse in adults ≥50 taking opioids for chronic pain

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TUESDAY, April 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- In adults age 50 or older, higher education, illicit drug use, depression, and pain interference with normal work are significantly associated with opioid misuse, according to a study published recently in Nursing Outlook.

Yu-Ping Chang, Ph.D., R.N., from The State University of New York at Buffalo, used a convenience sample to describe the prevalence of prescription opioid misuse and identify factors associated with misuse among 130 adults (≥50 years) taking opioids for chronic pain.

The researcher found that 35 percent of the participants misused their prescription opioids. Younger age, higher level of education, a moderate level of depression, an alcohol use problem, illicit drug use, and a higher level of pain interference on walking ability and normal work were factors associated with misuse. However, only education, illicit drug use, depression, and pain interference with normal work were significant predictors of misuse.

"Our study provided important information to health care providers about identifying high-risk older adults," the author write.

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