Opioid prescriptions common for minor ER cases, like ankle sprains

EMBED </>More Videos

Opioid prescriptions common for minor ER cases, like ankle sprains - Ali Gorman reports during Action News at 5pm on July 24, 2018. (WPVI)

State rates range from 2.8% in N.D. to 40% in Arkansas
A new study raises questions about how common prescriptions for opioid pain killers can be, and how where you live can make all the difference.

Opioid painkillers are designed for serious pain, such as after a major surgery.

But a Penn Medicine team found they're prescribed surprisingly often for minor injuries, such as if you sprain your ankle and go to the emergency room.

Opioid Prescriptions for Ankle Sprains



Their nationwide survey found that 1 in 4 ankle sprain patients got an opioid prescription. However, it varied dramatically from state to state.

In North Dakota, for example, just under 3 percent of patients got opioids.

Yet in Arkansas, 40 percent got prescriptions for them.

In Pennsylvania and New Jersey, less than 15 percent got prescriptions.

The study leaders say emergency room doctors need more specific guidelines on when to use opioids, or when to use non-opioid alternatives.

For more information:

6abc.com/opioidcrisis/
Related Topics:
healthhealthcheck6abc Opioidsopioidsprescription drugs
(Copyright ©2018 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.)