The Impact of Pain Management with Opioids among Older Adults Post Orthopedic Trauma

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Abstract

Pain has a significant effect on physical and psychological outcomes for older adults post orthopedic trauma. The purpose of this study was to describe the management of pain among older trauma patients and consider differences between those who received 3 or more dosages daily of opioids versus those who did not. This was a secondary data analysis using data from an intervention study testing the effect of Function Focused Care among older orthopedic trauma patients (FFC-AC). The FFC-AC study was done on trauma units in two acute care settings designated as Level I or II trauma centers from September 2014 to September 2015. All participants from the parent FFC-AC study were included. Data collection for the parent study was done within 24 hours of admission and within 24 hours of discharge and included demographics, medications, assessment of function, physical activity, mood, physical resilience, and whether the patient had pain and their pain intensity. Patient records included all 89 individuals from the parent study, 59 (66%) of whom were female and 82 (92%) were white. Records indicated that those who received more than three dosages per day of opioids had a shorter length of stay, were younger, had more intense pain, and were more resilient compared with those who received less than three dosages per day. This secondary data analysis provides support for the importance of considering pain and pain management among older adults post trauma.

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