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An Opiate-free Recovery: How LSU Health is Reducing Opioid Use After Surgery

The epidemic of opioid addiction continues to ravage our country, with over 130 deaths a day. LSU Health is taking action to deal with this national crisis. LSU Health is teaching students non-addictive strategies to manage pain in our patients, conducting cutting-edge research on pain and addiction, and developing non-addicting medications for the management of chronic pain. They are also developing novel clinical strategies to reduce, even eliminate, the need for opioids after surgery.

Patients are now able to recover much faster with much less pain and return to their life much more quickly than we’ve ever seen in the past. ~ Vinod Dasa, M.D.

In a study conducted by LSU Health Department Head of Orthopeadic Surgery, Robert Zura, M.D., acute and chronic use of NSAIDs or opioids was associated with impaired fracture healing. There is particular risk in prescribing opioid analgesics for fracture, though literature suggests that roughly half of opioid-naïve patients receive such a prescription. Overall, 49.2% of opioid-naïve patients receive an opioid prescription for post-operative pain control at hospital discharge after major surgery. Yet they report there is no evidence that opioids are more effective than non-opioids for acute extremity pain in the Emergency Department.


Learn more about LSU Health’s strides in pain reduction and the elimination the use of opioids for pain management in this video: