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, 26 (4), 262-78

Doctor Shopping: A Concept Analysis

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Doctor Shopping: A Concept Analysis

Julie Worley et al. Res Theory Nurs Pract.

Abstract

Prescription drug abuse is a significant problem in the United States that poses a serious health risk to Americans and is therefore significant to the field of nursing. The prescription drugs that are designated in the United States as having abuse potential are called controlled or scheduled drugs. The most common types of abused prescription drugs are benzodiazepines prescribed for anxiety, opioids prescribed for pain, and stimulants prescribed for attention deficit disorder. These prescription drugs are abused by taking larger doses than prescribed for nonmedical use to achieve a high or euphoric feeling, or are sold illicitly for profit. In 2009, there were 2.4 million nonmedical users of prescription opioids in the United States. These prescription drugs are often obtained by seeing multiple prescribers, often under false pretenses or with complicity from the prescribers that leads to abuse and illicit sales. The term doctor shopping has been used not only to refer to this phenomenon but has also had other meanings throughout the past decades. Thus, concept analysis is the focus of this article for clarification using the Walker and Avant method. Health implications and suggestions for minimizing doctor shopping are included.

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