Evidence-based postsurgical regimen reduces length of stay, opioid use

Multimodal pain care after surgery can cut hospital stays for patients already taking opioids, according to a prospective pilot study presented at the 32nd Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Pain Medicine. An evidence-based pathway with such features as early patient identification, patient/professional education, primary care collaboration and patient engagement reduced lengths of stay, readmission rates and opioid dosage. "The day has come and gone where solely using opioids to manage pain in noncancer patients is considered appropriate care," lead author David A. Edwards, M.D., Ph.D., clinical chief of Pain at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee, said in a statement. Study announcement (.pdf)