Roadmap to Opioid Safety
Opioids, often called narcotics or controlled substances, are prescription pain reliever medicines. This includes but is not limited to Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, and Tramadol. These powerful drugs are used to alleviate severe pain, especially during hours immediately following surgery. When misused, they can lead to addiction and deadly overdose.
Opioid Safety Recommendations
- Take only as prescribed by a physician
- Take the lowest dose possible for the shortest duration possible
- Do not share medications with family or friends
- Utilize non-prescription alternatives to relieve pain
- Practice safe storage and disposal
Controlling Pain after Surgery without Pain Medicine
- Our goal at Sano is to help you control your pain and reduce it over time, but you can expect some pain immediately following surgery.
- Many injuries and procedures do not require prescription medication. Your physician may prescribe over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen (Tylenol), or Ibuprofen, as the best medicine for controlling pain.
- Manage pain without medicine. Splints, ice/heat, elevation, exercise, and physical therapy may be options for managing discomfort. Positive coping strategies, like the support of family and friends, also play a role in recovery.
Narcotic Pain Medicine
The key for orthopedic surgeries is taking the smallest dosage for the shortest duration. Here are some additional guidelines for safe use, storage, and disposal:
- Only take opioids as prescribed. Do not take more than instructed or more often than prescribed. Do not share medication and do not combine with alcohol or anxiety medicine. Talk to your physician about what other medicines you are taking.
- Safely store medication. Keep the medicine in a safe, secure place at all times. Keep out of reach of children and pets.
- Notify your physician of any prior history of addiction, drug abuse or depression. This will help us manage your pain more effectively and safely.
- Safely dispose of pain medication. Place unused opioids in the disposal unit at the pharmacy or police station. Lee’s Summit Medical Center ER and Saint Luke’s South Hospital ER have drop boxes in their facilities.
Our team is here to help. Let our staff know if you have any questions or need help crafting a pain management plan for you.
View our full controlled substance policy.