Study of Variations in Inpatient Opioid Consumption after Total Shoulder Arthroplasty: Influence of Patient- and Surgeon-related Factors


The aims of this study were to examine variances in inpatient opioid consumption after total shoulder arthroplasty (TSA) and to determine factors influencing inpatient opioid utilization.


The sample included patients undergoing elective TSA at a tertiary-level institution between January 2016 and April 2018. Opioid consumption during the inpatient stay was converted into morphine milligram equivalents (MMEs), accounting for dosage and route of administration. The MMEs were calculated per patient encounter and used to calculate mean opioid consumption. Bivariate linear regression analysis was performed to assess the impact of patient-related factors and surgery-related factors on inpatient opioid consumption.


Altogether 20 surgeons performed 622 TSAs. The average opioid dose per encounter was 47.4 ± 65.7 MME/d. MMEs prescribed varied significantly among surgeon providers (P < .01). Pre-existing psychiatric disorders (P = .00012), preoperative opioid use (P = .0013), highest quartile of median household income (P = .048), current-smoker status (P < .001), age < 60 years (P < .01), and general anesthesia (vs. regional anesthesia, P = .005) were associated with significant inpatient opioid consumption after TSA. Sex, race, American Society of Anesthesiologists status, replacement type (anatomic TSA vs. reverse TSA), and prior shoulder surgery did not show any significant differences.


There is considerable variation in inpatient opioid consumption after TSA at the same institution. Knowledge of modifiable and nonmodifiable risk factors that increase inpatient opioid consumption will help to optimize multimodal analgesia protocols for TSA.

 2019 Sep 5. pii: S1058-2746(19)30462-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jse.2019.06.021. [Epub ahead of print]