Many Take Painkillers for Months After Knee and Hip Replacements

May 19, 2017 in Our News & Bulletins by YouAlwaysHaveUsHC


A recent study finds many knee and hip replacements patients continue to take powerful prescription painkillers months after their surgery. The findings are a concern because of the rising rates of opioid addiction and overdoses in the United States. Common opioid painkillers include OxyContin, Vicodin and Percocet.

Study authors analyzed data from 574 knee or hip replacement patients. Taking the painkillers before joint replacement surgery is a strong predictor of long-term opioid use. Approximately 30 percent of the participants were taking opioids before the surgery. Among this group, 53 percent of knee patients and 35 percent of hip patients were continuing to take the drugs six months post surgery.

In addition, some of the participants became chronic users after their surgery. Among patients who did not take opioids before surgery, 8 percent of knee patients and 4 percent of hip patients were still using the painkillers six months after surgery.

If you have recently had knee or hip replacement surgery, we can help. Our aides can help you around the home so you can recover safe and effectively.

Source: Goesling J, Moser S, Zaidi B, et al. Trends and predictors of opioid use after total knee and total hip arthroplasty. Pain, June 2016; 157 (6): 1259-1265.

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