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A review of opioid prescription in a teaching hospital in Colombia

Authors Moyano J, Figueras A

Received 4 April 2012

Accepted for publication 24 May 2012

Published 30 July 2012 Volume 2012:5 Pages 237—242


Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 4

Jairo Moyano,1 Albert Figueras2
1Anesthesia Department, Pain Service, Hospital Universitario Fundación Santafé de Bogotá, Avenida 9 No 117-20, Bogotá, Republic of Colombia; 2Fundació Institut Català de Farmacología, Departamento de Farmacología Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain

Introduction: Review of opioid prescriptions in a hospital provides valuable information to health care professionals which may contribute to proper pain management; opioid utilization studies may help uncover factors that can be improved for better prescribing. To evaluate the use of opioid analgesics in a university hospital, a review of opioids prescribed in hospitalized patients was developed.
Methods: Information was obtained from the pharmacy database and medical records. The study period was 1 month.
Results: Medical records of 1156 patients admitted in July 2009 were analyzed. The most widely prescribed opioid was tramadol; the preferred administration route was intravenous; the main indication was severe pain; and major prescribers were from surgical departments.
Discussion: Underutilization of potent opioids for acute and chronic pain seems to occur.
Conclusion: Most prescribers prefer weak opioids, given intravenously to treat acute and chronic pain, while some patients may benefit from the prescription of more potent opioids.

Keywords: drug utilization, pain, tramadol, morphine, hydromorphone, pethidine

Corrigendum for this paper has been published

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