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Comparison of Parenteral Opioid Dosing in Adult Sickle Cell Disease Patients With Vaso-occlusive Crisis

Comparison of Parenteral Opioid Dosing in Adult Sickle Cell Disease Patients With Vaso-occlusive Crisis

Journal of Pain and Palliative Care PharmacoTherapy 2019: 1-7

Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a chronic condition characterized by multiple vaso-occlusive complications, including acute pain crisis. The mainstay of treatment for patients presenting with vaso-occlusive crisis (VOC) is pain control and adequate hydration. Currently, there are no studies to determine an optimal pain control regimen in adult SCD patients. The main objective of this study is to evaluate whether outcomes differ in patients with VOC based on pain management treatment modality. A retrospective review of admissions with a primary diagnosis of VOC admitted to our facility was conducted. The primary outcome was to compare the average length of stay (LOS) in patients treated with intermittent injection (INT) or patient-controlled analgesia (PCA). Secondary outcomes assessed included 30-day readmission, treatment failure, and impact on pain scores. Of 302 admissions screened, 150 met inclusion criteria (INT: n = 100; PCA: n = 50). Selection of initial pain control regimen showed no difference in average LOS (INT: 5.96 ± 4.19 days vs. PCA: 6.01 ± 3.47 days; P = .94) or 30-day readmission rates (INT: 21% vs. PCA: 16%; P = .52). Treatment failure was significantly higher in the INT group, occurring in 64% of patients vs. 14% in the PCA group (P < .0001). Pain scores were not significantly impacted by selection of pain regimen. Our study indicates that INT and PCA treatment modalities are both effective at controlling pain in VOC; however, more patients in the INT group were characterized as having a treatment failure. Based on our results, it is reasonable to initiate PCA as the primary pain treatment strategy in SCD patients presenting in VOC.

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Accession: 066611775

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PMID: 30896312

DOI: 10.1080/15360288.2019.1577938

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