Pain medication use among patients with posttraumatic stress disorder

Psychosomatics. Mar-Apr 2006;47(2):136-42. doi: 10.1176/appi.psy.47.2.136.

Abstract

The relationship of analgesic medication use with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosis was investigated among a sample of 173 African Americans presenting for routine outpatient visits at an urban mental health center. Seventy-eight (43.5%) of the sample met DSM-IV PTSD criteria. Those with PTSD had significantly higher use of analgesic medication (both opiate and non-opiate), as compared with non-PTSD patients. PTSD symptoms, as measured by the Posttraumatic Symptom Scale, were significantly higher in subjects who were prescribed analgesics. The authors conclude that there may be a relationship between PTSD and use of pain medications warranting further examination of the endogenous opiate system in the pathophysiology of PTSD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Analgesics, Opioid / therapeutic use*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use*
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Drug Utilization / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / diagnosis
  • Pain / drug therapy*
  • Pain / epidemiology*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / diagnosis
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / epidemiology*
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / physiopathology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires

Substances

  • Analgesics, Opioid
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal