Module 3: Assessment

Lesson 1

Chronic pain: Safety considerations

It is essential to assess for issues related to the safety of prescribing controlled substances, and to reduce the risk of misuse. Assessment tools that can be used for alcohol and other substances include:

In addition it is important to identify factors that indicate a higher risk for substance misuse:

  • History of alcohol or substance abuse (patient and/or family)
  • Uncertain security in the home (e.g., living in a boarding home with minimal protection for possessions)
  • Past aberrant drug-related behaviours (see Canadian Guideline for Safe and Effective Use of Opioids for Chronic Non-Cancer Pain – Recommendation 12)