Initiating Buprenorphine Treatment for Hospitalized Patients With Opioid Dependence: A Case Series

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Abstract

Background and Objectives:

Opioid dependent patients are hospitalized frequently. We aimed to determine if initiation of buprenorphine treatment during hospitalization facilitates entry into treatment following discharge.

Methods:

Retrospective case series (n = 47).

Results:

Twenty-two (46.8%) patients successfully initiated buprenorphine treatment within 2 months of discharge. Those patients obtaining a referral to a specific program were more successful in continuing treatment, but this difference did not reach statistical significance (59.1% vs 39.1%, p = 0.18).

Discussion and Conclusions:

Hospitalization may be an important opportunity to engage opioid dependent patients to initiate buprenorphine treatment.

Scientific Significance:

This study provides provisional support for utilizing buprenorphine for hospitalized patients. (Am J Addict 2015;24:10–14)

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