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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 89

of 'Prevention and management of side effects in patients receiving opioids for chronic pain'

Opioids in people with cancer-related pain.
Quigley C
BMJ Clin Evid. 2008;2008 Epub 2008 Jul 31.
INTRODUCTION: Up to 80% of people with cancer experience pain at some time during their illness, and most will need opioid analgesics. This review assesses how different opioid analgesics compare, in terms of both pain control and adverse effects, in people with cancer.
METHODS AND OUTCOMES: We conducted a systematic review and aimed to answer the following clinical question: what are the effects of opioids in treating cancer-related pain? We searched: Medline, Embase, The Cochrane Library, and other important databases up to July 2007 (BMJ Clinical Evidence reviews are updated periodically; please check our website for the most up-to-date version of this review). We included harms alerts from relevant organisations such as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
RESULTS: We found 22 systematic reviews, RCTs, or observational studies that met our inclusion criteria. We performed a GRADE evaluation of the quality of evidence for interventions.
CONCLUSIONS: In this systematic review, we present information relating to the effectiveness and safety of the following interventions: codeine, dihydrocodeine, transdermal fentanyl, hydromorphone, methadone, morphine, oxycodone, and tramadol.
Hammersmith Hospital Trust, London, UK.