Category: Federal Forum Posters
Purpose: With the implementation of a new policy aimed at decreasing the prevalence of opioid and benzodiazepine co-prescribing, it would be interesting to see how benzodiazepine discontinuation was approached by physicians. Additionally, future priority measures will focus on benzodiazepine use in high risk populations; Therefore, the current study aims to establish common methods used in discontinuation of benzodiazepines and to assess the appropriateness of the taper strategy used. The object is to find potential areas where additional provider education may be warranted in order to promote safer and more effective benzodiazepine discontinuation for future initiatives.
Methods: This study will be submitted to the Institutional Review Board for approval. Data will be abstracted from electronic medical records and pulled from the national Opioid Safety Initiative dashboard. The electronic records will identify patients who have been on both opioids and benzodiazepines for greater than three days and initiated on a taper of either the opioid or the benzodiazepine. Taper time frames will be broken down into the following groups: no taper, rapid taper (less than one month), average (one to three months), gradual (three to six months), or prolonged (greater than six months). Data collected will be used to assess the duration of taper commonly used in the discontinuation of a benzodiazepine or opioid. The following data will be collected: patient age; medication chosen to be discontinued; presence of an antidepressant prior to taper; whether an antidepressant was initiated at the time of taper; benzodiazepine indication; whether the patient had a history of a substance use disorder; length of time on the benzodiazepine prior to taper initiation; whether the discontinuation failed, succeeded or still ongoing; and presence of post-traumatic stress disorder, dementia, or traumatic brain injury. Data will be maintained confidentially and without patient identifiers.
Results: Not applicable
Conclusion: Not applicable
Yelena Lugin– PGY1 Resident, Robley Rex VAMC, Louisville, KY