Changes in opioid prescribing patterns: A survey of the Florida society of plastic surgeons

Steven A. Ovadia, Onelio Garcia, Seth R. Thaller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Introduction:With thousands of people in the United States dying of opioid overdose each month, the opioid epidemic has become a serious public health concern. Legislators have attempted to address this problem at various levels of the government. Evaluation of outcomes of these measures is a necessary part of resolving the epidemic. Our survey was designed to evaluate the impact of measures enacted in Florida State in 2018 upon prescribing practices of plastic surgeons. Methods: The survey was prepared electronically using the online Qualtrics platform. Survey questions were multiple choice and inquired regarding changes in prescribing practices after enactment ofmandatory query of the prescription drug monitoring program database and prescribing limits in Florida. The survey was distributed by e-mail 1 year after these laws took effect. Two survey reminder e-mails were sent at 2-week intervals after the initial message. Results were collected for an additional 3 weeks after the final correspondence. Results: Thirty-two survey responses were received after distribution to the 156 members of the Florida Society of Plastic Surgeons, for a response rate of 20.5%. Twenty-two respondents reported changing their prescribing practices. The most common change reported was decreased number of tablets prescribed. Most respondents reported they believe thatmandatory prescription drugmonitoring program query and prescribing limitswill be effective. This included 17 (53.1%) and 18 (56.3%) respondents, respectively. Conclusions: Results from our survey indicate that Florida plastic surgeons have adjusted their prescribing practices in response to recently enacted legislation. Most plastic surgeons reported decreased number of tablets of opioids prescribed. Many also reported incorporating nonopioid analgesics. Further study will be necessary to determine the impact of these changes on rates of opioid overdose.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e54-e58
JournalAnnals of plastic surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020


  • Florida
  • Opioid
  • PDMP
  • Pain control
  • Pain management
  • Plastic surgeon
  • Plastic surgery
  • Prescribing limits
  • Prescribing practices
  • Prescription drug monitoring program
  • Survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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