HealthDay News — Potential risk factors for new long-term opioid use after lung cancer surgery have been identified, and new long-term opioid use is associated with an increased risk for all-cause mortality, according to a study published online Sept. 12 in Regional Anesthesia & Pain Medicine.
Tak Kyu Oh, M.D., Ph.D., from the Seoul National University Bundang Hospital in South Korea, and colleagues examined the proportion and associated factors for new long-term opioid use after lung cancer surgery using data from the South Korean National Health Insurance Database. All patients undergoing lung cancer surgery between 2011 and 2018 were included; new long-term opioid use was defined as an active opioid prescription at six months postoperatively.
The final analysis included 54,509 patients. The researchers found that 6.1 percent of patients who were newly prescribed opioids comprised the new long-term opioid user group at six months postoperatively. A higher rate of new long-term opioid use was seen in association with older age, male sex, wider surgical extent, open thoracotomy, increased Charlson Comorbidity Index score, neoadjuvant or adjuvant chemotherapy, preoperative anxiety disorder, and insomnia disorder. The risk for two-year all-cause mortality was increased for the new long-term opioid user group (hazard ratio, 1.40). The risk for two-year all-cause mortality was increased for the new long-term potent opioid user and less potent opioid user groups (hazard ratios, 1.92 and 1.22, respectively).
“New long-term opioid use may be associated with poor long-term survival outcomes, especially in potent opioid users,” the authors write.