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Table 2 Rates of dependence, substance use disorder, and problematic use in samples of chronic non-cancer pain patients

From: Chronic pain and opioid misuse: a review of reviews

Author Population Number of studies Rate calculated Estimate
Minozzi et al. (2012) Individuals receiving any opioid analgesic for acute or chronic pain from any physical condition 17 Median incidence of dependence 0.5%
(Range: 0%–24%)
17 Median prevalence of dependence 4.5%
(Range: 0%–31%)
Morasco et al. (2011) Chronic non-cancer pain patients, regardless of whether they were prescribed opioids 21 Overall prevalence of current substance use disorder 3–48%
21 Lifetime prevalence of any substance use disorder 16%–74%
Vowles et al. (2015) Adults with chronic non-cancer pain (≥3 months) using oral opioids 38 Rate of problematic use <1%–81%
29 Rate of misuse 21%–29%
(95% CI: 13%–38%)
1 Rate of abuse 8%
12 Rate of addiction 8%–12%
(95% CI: 3%–17%)
Noble et al. (2008) Patients treated with opioids for chronic non-cancer pain for at least six months 7 Rate of addiction 0.05%
(1 out of 2042 patients)
2 Rate of abuse 0.43%
(3 out of 685 patients)
Kalso et al. (2004) Adult patients with chronic non-cancer pain in randomized controlled trials comparing opioids versus placebo 15 Rate of addiction Estimates could not be calculated due to small sample sizes and short follow-up periods
Chou et al. (2015) Adults with chronic pain prescribed long-term opioid therapy – in primary care 3 Prevalence of abuse 0.6%–8%
Prevalence of dependence 3%–26%
Adults with chronic pain prescribed long-term opioid therapy – in pain clinics 7 Prevalence of misuse 8%–16%
Prevalence of addiction 2%–14%