Scheduled Presentations by Subspecialty

Not Applicable

“Opioid Prescribing Practices Following Elective Surgery in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery”

Mathew Biskup, Agnieszka Dzioba, Leigh Sowerby, Eric Monteiro, Julie Strychowsky


Opioid Prescribing Practices Following Elective Surgery in Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery


Background: Canada has the second highest number of opioid prescriptions per capita in the world. Surgeons play a critical role as they are responsible for the management of post-operative pain in their patients

Methods: An online survey designed to evaluate opioid prescribing practices for a variety of elective surgeries was distributed to members of the Canadian Society of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.

Results: The survey response rate was 18%. The most commonly prescribed opioid was Codeine/Acetaminophen, 48.2% (n = 53), in the adult population, and Morphine, 47.1% (n = 41), in the pediatric population. The surgery with the highest oral morphine equivalents prescribed was tonsillectomy/adenoidectomy for both adult and pediatric patients, with a median of 150 mg (30 doses) for adults and 4.5 mg/kg (23 doses) for pediatrics.

Conclusions: Our study demonstrates a wide variability in opioid prescriptions across procedures and within each individual procedure.

Learning Objectives

  1. By the end of this session, participants will be able to describe current opioid prescribing practices following elective surgery in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery for paediatric and adult patients in Canada.


  1. By the end of this session, participants will be able to appreciate opioid misuse and abuse as an important patient safety issue and identify potential opportunities for interventions aimed at harm reduction and resource stewardship.

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Scheduling Details

This 7 minute presentation is scheduled to take place on June 4, 2019 at 10:14 in the Hall C.

Authors' Contact Details

Corresponding Author: Dr. Mathew Biskup

Senior Author: Dr. Julie Strychowsky

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