UT Medical Center study supports opiate detox during pregnancy

Current recommendations dissuade pregnant women with opioid dependence from undergoing detoxification due to the risk of preterm labor, fetal distress or fetal demise. New research, however, shows detox of opiate addicted pregnant patients is not actually harmful.

The study was conducted at The University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville and published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. The researchers analyzed data collected during ongoing prenatal care of opiate addicted pregnant women over a span of five and a half years.

During that time, 301 opiate-addicted patients were fully detoxed while pregnant through four different methods, and the researchers identified no adverse fetal outcomes related to the detoxification.

Additional findings from the study are highlighted here.

1. All total, 94 patients (31 percent) delivered newborns that were treated for neonatal abstinence syndrome.

2. There was an 18.5 percent rate of NAS in the 108 patients who were acutely detoxed while incarcerated.

3. Among the 23 patients who underwent inpatient detox with intense outpatient follow-up management, NAS was identified in 17.4 percent.

4. NAS was present in 17.2 percent of the 93 patients who went through slow outpatient buprenorphine detox.

5. Seventy-seven patients went through inpatient detox without intense outpatient follow-up management. Among these patients, NAS was identified in 70.1 percent.

 

 

More articles on opioids:
Substance use policies, public health interventions linked to life expectancy
HHS funnels $94M into the fight against opioid abuse
AMA president calls on physicians to help end America's opioid epidemic

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