Opioid Abuse and Surgery
Controlling pain helps to speed recovery following your operation. Your surgical team wants to help you to safely and effectively manage any pain that you may have after surgery. “Safe pain control” means using medication and other therapies to control pain with the least amount of side effects.
Find answers to common questions about safe and effective pain control after surgery.
Our FAQs is a must-read prior to surgery. Not only does it answer common questions, it also includes a Pain Management Guide for mild, mild-to-moderate, and severe pain to help in the recovery process.
(Please note that by clicking on the links below, you will be leaving the American College of Surgeons website to view content on external websites.)
Opioid Risk Tool (screening form to assess risk of misuse)
Help and Treatment with Opioid Misuse or Abuse (addiction or dependence)
Surgeons and all physicians are now screening their patients prior to opioid administration using the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. Alternatives to opioids are being used and the amount and dose of opioid pills prescribed to patients is lower when appropriate. Numerous studies are underway monitoring the number of pills used by patients and their pain scores to better match pain control options for specific operations and avoid any excess opioid use (Hill MV, et al. 2018; Howard R, et al. 2018). Below are additional educational and leadership strategies for surgeons:
We have educational programs, professional resources, research news, even opportunities to get involved—all in an effort to promote safe pain control post-surgery.See What’s Available
This section of the American College of Surgeons website has been developed so you can learn more about safe pain control after your operation. If you have any questions after reading through this material, don’t hesitate to ask your surgeon.