New data reveals impact of opioid-related adverse events on length, cost of hospitalization after surgery

Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: PCRX) today announced data from a large-scale analysis of a national database of patients from 380 hospitals in the United States who underwent 319,898 inpatient surgeries and received opioids for postsurgical pain management. The analysis found that opioid-related adverse events (ORAEs) were associated with a $4,707 increase in hospital costs and a 3.3-day increase in the average length of stay (LOS) in the hospital. The data were published in this month's issue of the Journal of Pain and Palliative Care Pharmacotherapy.

“Based on a review of a large, nationally representative patient sample, we were able to correlate and quantify the impact of opioid-related adverse events on the length and cost of hospitalization after surgery”

"Based on a review of a large, nationally representative patient sample, we were able to correlate and quantify the impact of opioid-related adverse events on the length and cost of hospitalization after surgery," said Gary Oderda, PharmD, MPH, the paper's lead author and professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and director of the Utah Pharmacotherapy Outcomes Research Center at the University of Utah College of Pharmacy. "Although opioids have long been the mainstay of postsurgical pain control, a growing body of evidence similar to ours suggests the need to re-examine the benefit-risk profile of an opioid-centric pain management paradigm and explore alternative modalities."

In this retrospective analysis, researchers utilized the Premier healthcare alliance database, the nation's most comprehensive repository of clinical, financial and outcomes information, in order to identify adult patients who underwent common soft tissue and orthopedic surgical procedures and received opioids from September 2008 to August 2010. Records were evaluated to identify patients who received a diagnosis of respiratory, gastrointestinal, central nervous system, urinary or other related adverse events (not present at admission).

Researchers compared differences in LOS, overall hospital cost and readmission rate between the patients who experienced an ORAE (approximately 12 percent of the sample) and those who did not. Key findings demonstrated that patients experiencing an ORAE:

  • Were hospitalized 3.3 days longer than patients without an ORAE (7.6 days vs. 4.2 days, P<0.0001)
  • Had a $4,707 mean increase from the baseline hospitalization cost compared to patients without an ORAE ($22,077 vs. $17,370, P<0.0001)
  • Had a significantly greater 30-day, all-cause readmission rate (15.8 percent vs. 9.4 percent, P<0.0001) compared to patients without an ORAE

"For years, we've had clinical evidence about the prevalence of opioid-related adverse events, particularly in certain patient populations, as illustrated by the recent Joint Commission Sentinel Event Alert that detailed the risk for respiratory depression among specific patient types," said Dave Stack, President and CEO of Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. "Dr. Oderda's research contributes to a growing body of socioeconomic evidence that quantifies the significant costs these adverse events impose on both the healthcare system and on patient quality of life, furthering the case for a new, non-opioid based approach to postsurgical pain management."

Source:

Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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