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Papers of the Week

Papers: 16 Dec 2023 - 22 Dec 2023

2023 Dec

Lancet Reg Health Eur



Prevalence of chronic pain or analgesic use in children and young people and its long-term impact on substance misuse, mental illness, and prescription opioid use: a retrospective longitudinal cohort study.


Lambarth A, Katsoulis M, Ju C, Warwick A, Takhar R, Dale C, Prieto-Merino D, Morris A, Sen D, Wei L, Sofat R


Epidemiological studies suggest chronic and recurrent pain affects around a quarter of children, while 8% report intense and frequent pain. The long-term implications of chronic pain in childhood are uncertain. Using electronic health records (EHRs) we used both disease codes and medicines prescription records to investigate the scale of chronic pain and long-term analgesic use in children and young people (CYP), and if chronic pain and/or use of analgesic medicines at an early age is associated with substance misuse, use of prescription opioids, and poor mental health in adulthood.