Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

VA Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Opioid use among veterans undergoing major joint surgery managed by a multidisciplinary transitional pain service.

Buys MJ, Bayless K, Romesser J, Anderson Z, Patel S, Zhang C, Presson AP, Brooke BS. Opioid use among veterans undergoing major joint surgery managed by a multidisciplinary transitional pain service. Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine. 2020 Nov 1; 45(11):847-852.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


BACKGROUND: Chronic postsurgical pain and opioid use is a problem among patients undergoing many types of surgical procedures. A multidisciplinary approach to perioperative pain management known as a transitional pain service (TPS) may lower these risks. METHODS: This retrospective cohort study was conducted at the Salt Lake City VA Medical Center to compare patients undergoing elective primary or revision total knee, hip, or shoulder replacement or rotator cuff repair in the year before (2017) and after (2018) implementation of a TPS. The primary outcome is the proportion of patients taking opioids 90 days after surgery. Secondary outcomes include new chronic opioid use (COU) after surgery as well as the proportion of previous chronic opioid users who stopped or decreased opioid use after surgery. RESULTS: At 90 days after surgery, patients enrolled in TPS were significantly less likely to be taking opioids (13.4% TPS vs 27.3% pre-TPS; p = 0.002). This relationship remained statistically significant in a multivariable logistic regression analysis, where the TPS group had 69% lower odds of postoperative COU compared with the preintervention group (OR: 0.31; 95% CI: 0.14 to 0.66; p = 0.03). Opioid-naive patients enrolled in TPS were less likely to have new COU after surgery (0.7% TPS vs 8.4% pre-TPS; p = 0.004). Further, patients enrolled in TPS with existing COU prior to surgery were more likely to reduce or completely stop opioid use after surgery (67.5% TPS vs 45.3% pre-TPS; p = 0.037) as compared with pre-TPS. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that a TPS is an effective strategy for preventing new COU and reducing overall opioid use following orthopedic joint procedures in a Veterans Affairs hospital.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.