Communication about Chronic Pain and Opioids in Primary Care

Communication about chronic pain and opioids is often challenging, but there is little research on whether patient–doctor communication about pain affects the patient and physician visit experience. This study video recorded 86 primary care visits involving 49 physicians and 86 patients taking long-term opioids for chronic musculoskeletal pain and found that patient–physician disagreement and patient requests for opioid dose increases resulted in the worst ratings. Training programs focused on assisting physicians in negotiating disagreements about pain management likely have potential to improve visit experience ratings for both patients and physicians.

 Links to Fast Facts:  Pain (4/2018) (free access via Medscape with site registration)