To examine opioid use disorder (OUD)-related hospitalizations and associated healthcare utilization outcomes in people with five common musculoskeletal diseases.
We used the U.S. National Inpatient Sample (NIS) data from 1998-2014 to examine the rates of OUD-hospitalizations (per 100,000 NIS claims overall), time-trends and outcomes in five, common rheumatic diseases, gout, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis (OA), and low back pain (LBP).
OUD-hospitalization rate per 100,000 total NIS claims in 1998-2000 versus 2015-2016 (and increase) were as follows: gout, 0.05 versus 1.88 (36-fold); OA, 0.68 versus 10.22 (14-fold); fibromyalgia, 0.53 versus 6.98 (12-fold); RA, 0.30 versus 3.16 (9.5-fold); and LBP, 1.17 versus 7.64 (5.5-fold). The median hospital charges and hospital stays for OUD-hospitalizations were: gout, $18,363 and 2.5 days; RA, $26,639 and 2.4 days; fibromyalgia, $15,772 and 2.1 days; OA, $17,398 and 2.4 days; and LBP, $22,794 and 2 days. In-hospital mortality rates ranged 0.9% for LBP versus 1.7% for gout with OUD-hospitalizations. Compared to the those without each musculoskeletal disorder, age, sex, race and insurance payer adjusted total hospital charges (inflation-adjusted) for OUD-hospitalizations with each rheumatic disease were: gout, $697 higher; OA, $4,759 lower; fibromyalgia, $2,082 lower; RA, $1,258 lower; and LBP, $4,944 lower.
OUD-hospitalizations increased in all 5 musculoskeletal diseases studied, but the rate of increase differed. Awareness of these OUD-hospitalization trends in 5 musculoskeletal diseases among providers, policy-makers and patients is important. Development and implementation of interventions, policies and practices to potentially reduce OUD-associated impact in people with rheumatic diseases is needed.