Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain

J Pain Palliat Care Pharmacother. 2016 Jun;30(2):138-40. doi: 10.3109/15360288.2016.1173761.


Improving the way opioids are prescribed through clinical practice guidelines can ensure patients have access to safer, more effective chronic pain treatment while reducing the number of people who misuse, abuse, or overdose from these drugs. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) developed and published the Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain to provide recommendations for the prescribing of opioid pain medication for patients 18 and older in primary care settings. Recommendations focus on the use of opioids in treating chronic pain (pain lasting longer than 3 months or past the time of normal tissue healing) outside of active cancer treatment, palliative care, and end-of-life care.

Keywords: effectiveness; guideline; opioids; prescribing; primary care; safety.

Publication types

  • Practice Guideline

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics, Opioid / adverse effects
  • Analgesics, Opioid / therapeutic use*
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S.
  • Chronic Pain / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians' / standards
  • Prescription Drug Misuse / prevention & control*
  • Primary Health Care
  • United States


  • Analgesics, Opioid