Driving and Work Safety
Driving while using opioid medications remains a controversial issue.
Particularly at the initiation of therapy, opioid medications may cause sleepiness,
Clouded thinking, decreased concentration, slower reflexes, or in-coordination, all of which may pose a danger to the patient .
Effects of opioids resolve with steady use and a Consistent dose, some activities or driving may be Allowable at the discretion of the clinician’s medical Judgment and in the absence of signs of impairment. Current clinical guidelines recommend that all Patients who are initially prescribed opioid medications, or those who have their dose increased, be advised not to drive or engage in potentially dangerous work or other activities.
There is no consensus on exactly how long they should abstain from driving. Patients should be educated about the increased risk of impairment when
starting opioid therapy, when increasing doses, and when taking other drugs or substances (such as, alcohol, benzodiazepines, or even some cold remedies) that may exacerbate cognitive and motor impairment. Clinicians should be aware that certain professions (i.e., school bus drivers and pilots) may be subject to restrictions in the use of opioid medications. Clinicians should check with their state medical society or the Federation of State Medical Boards to obtain up-to-date information in this regard.
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