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Higher Overdose Risk in Kidney Patients Prescribed Opioids, Benzodiazepines

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About 75% of patients on dialysis received a prescription for an opioid medication and nearly one-third of them also received prescriptions for benzodiazepines—prescribing patterns that were associated with a substantially increased risk of hospitalization for overdose, according to a study presented at Kidney Week.

More than half of patients on dialysis experience pain, according to a previous study (1), and more than 60% receive a prescription for an opioid medication each year—20% of those received a more than 90-day supply. A growing nationwide opioid overdose epidemic has drawn attention to the potential risks associated with this common class