Last updated on February 2019

Tapering of Long-term Opioid Therapy in Chronic Pain Population. RCT With 12 Months Follow up


Brief description of study

This randomized controlled study compares tapering of long-term opioid therapy in a population with chronic non-cancer pain with control group constituted of waiting list. Half of participants receives intervention at baseline and the other half are controls but receives intervention after 4 months.

Detailed Study Description

Chronic non-cancer pain is a major problem in society and a common cause to seek health care. The suffering is complex as it, besides pain, often includes psychological symptoms and may decrease the ability to participate in work life. Pharmacological treatments have limited possibilities to ease suffering. Opioids used in this population have evidence to ease pain and to some extent increase physical ability when used in limited treatment periods and in selected patients. Medium to long-term opioid therapy, extended beyond three months, lack evidence of easing pain or increase physical ability.

The current study is conducted on a specialized pain care unit (Skane University Hospital; Lund) and aims at taper long-term opioid therapy with support from physician and nurse and study the effects of tapering.

Method: Randomized controlled study, without concealment. Waiting-list constitutes the control-group. Intervention means tapering with a motivated patient. Follow up at four and twelve months.

Primary end-point: collected opioid prescriptions registered in The National Board of Health and Welfare registry expressed in milligram of morphine equivalent.

Secondary end-point: Data will be retrieved from the Swedish Quality Registry for Pain Rehabilitation. The database contains participants' self-report of variables measuring the impact of rehabilitation on depressive symptoms, anxiety, rating of pain and acceptance to pain. Assessments are made prior to, at the end of and one year after discharge of the rehabilitation program.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT03485430

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