The Pain Management Group believes safe opioid prescribing requires careful assessment, monitoring, and re-assessment with proper changes in the treatment plan, and documentation.
Opioids should be prescribed to patients with severe pain that is not improved with nonopioid treatments, but never as first-line treatment for chronic pain. Opioids, under proper supervision, can provide relief from pain and improve some patients’ day-to-day function and quality of life. They should be viewed as just one tool in a multimodal approach including self-care, behavioral health and integrative therapies.
Although care must be tailored to the patient, it is crucial to apply the universal precautions due to the large potential for misuse and risk of adverse events with opioid medications. Treatment should be initiated as a trial aimed at achieving defined functional goals—and it should be continued, adjusted, or ceased depending upon the patient’s response and clinical indications and clinical signs.
At The Pain Management Group, patients are continually, closely monitored to address the balance of benefit to risk, which can change over time. This monitoring includes regular office visits to determine whether to continue, adjust, or discontinue therapy.
Our providers remain vigilant for signs of abnormal medication-taking behavior that may signal drug misuse or inadequate benefit—or a combination of both.
In summary, The Pain Management Group understands opioids can be beneficial for some patients—but harmful for others. Side effects are common, but usually manageable and typically diminish over time.