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Pain, alcohol use disorders and risky patterns of drinking among people with chronic non-cancer pain receiving long-term opioid therapy

Citation

Larance, B and Campbell, G and Peacock, A and Nielsen, S and Bruno, R and Hall, W and Lintzeris, N and Cohen, M and Degenhardt, L, Pain, alcohol use disorders and risky patterns of drinking among people with chronic non-cancer pain receiving long-term opioid therapy, Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 162 pp. 79-87. ISSN 0376-8716 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2016 Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2016.02.048

Abstract

Background: The utilisation of pharmaceutical opioids has increased internationally, and there is evidence of increasing risky alcohol consumption with ageing. This study examines the patterns and correlates of risky drinking among people with chronic non-cancer pain (CNCP) prescribed opioids, and the associations between alcohol consumption and pain.

Methods: The Pain and Opioids IN Treatment cohort comprises 1514 people in Australia prescribed pharmaceutical opioids for CNCP. Participants reported lifetime, past year and past month alcohol use, as well as mental and physical health, other substance use, pain characteristics, and current opioid dose.

Results: Less than one-tenth of the sample were lifetime abstainers (7%); 34% were former drinkers; 34% were non-risky drinkers (i.e., past 12 month use ≤4 standard drinks); 16% were occasional risky drinkers; and 8% were regular risky drinkers (i.e., ≥weekly use of >4 standard drinks). Males reported greater levels of alcohol use, and a third (33%) of the total sample reported a lifetime alcohol use disorder. Controlling for demographics, mental health, physical health and substance use disorder history, former drinkers (cf. non-risky drinkers) reported higher pain severity and interference ratings, and lower pain coping. Occasional risky drinkers and regular risky drinkers (cf. non-risky drinkers) reported higher levels of pain interference.

Conclusions: Among people with CNCP,those who abstained from alcohol or drank at risky levels reported poorer pain outcomes compared with moderate drinkers. Early identification and intervention for risky drinking among people is critical, particularly given the risks associated with co-administration of alcohol and opioids.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:pain; alcohol use disorder; opioid
Research Division:Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Research Group:Other Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Research Field:Psychology and Cognitive Sciences not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health)
Objective Field:Substance Abuse
Author:Peacock, A (Miss Amy Peacock)
Author:Bruno, R (Associate Professor Raimondo Bruno)
ID Code:112892
Year Published:2016
Funding Support:National Health and Medical Research Council (APP1022522)
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2016-12-02
Last Modified:2017-02-21
Downloads:0

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