Best Practices for Prescribing Opioids in Chronic Non-Cancer Pain

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Learning objectives 

After reading this monograph, pharmacists should be able to:
  • Describe how to assess patients for the appropriateness of treatment with opioid analgesics.
  • Explain how to start opiate therapy, change dosages, and discontinue treatment with opioid analgesics.
  • Recognize the types of written agreements that can be used to initiate and monitor therapy with opioid analgesics.
  • Describe how to monitor patients on opiate therapy, including high risk patients and those showing signs of abuse.
  • Explain the side effects associated with opiate treatment, including management of side effects.
  • Discuss switching between opiates and variables that may influence opioid rotation.
  • Describe the important points that must be conveyed to the patient during patient consultation.
  • Explain general and product-specific information related to the prescribing of extended-release/long-acting opiates.
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