Pain management and prescription monitoring

J Pain Symptom Manage. 2002 Mar;23(3):231-8. doi: 10.1016/s0885-3924(01)00410-9.


Preventing diversion and abuse of prescription controlled substances while ensuring their availability for legitimate medical use is an important public health goal in the United States. In one approach to preventing and identifying drug diversion, 17 states have implemented prescription monitoring programs (PMPs) to monitor the prescribing of certain controlled substances. While PMPs are not intended to interfere with legitimate prescribing, some in the pain management community feel that they negatively affect prescribing for pain management. This article describes a collaborative project initiated by the Pain & Policy Studies Group that brought together regulatory and pain management representatives twice in 1998 to share perspectives and reconcile differing views on the effects of PMPs. The ultimate goals of this project are to provide accurate information to healthcare clinicians about PMPs, better define the balance between preventing drug diversion and providing pain management, and promote continued dialog and cooperation among the groups.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Drug Monitoring*
  • Drug Prescriptions*
  • Drug and Narcotic Control*
  • Humans
  • Pain / drug therapy*