With the continued increase of opioid analgesic use in the United States,1 there is a parallel increase in opioid use disorder specifically involving prescription opioids (POs).2 The percentage of admissions into substance abuse treatment facilities for pharmaceutical opioid dependence treatment has increased from less than 1.0% during and before 1997 to 9.8% in 2011.3 By contrast, admissions for heroin treatment have fluctuated between 14% and 15.5% for the past 15 years. Increases in drug-related crime and spread of infectious disease are 2 societal consequences of increased opioid use disorder.
Ruetsch C. Treating Prescription Opioid Dependence. JAMA. 2014;312(11):1145-1146. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.4318