Question: What is the risk of future opioid misuse, after high school, in those high school students with legitimate opioid use before high school graduation?
Answer: The cited reference analyzed data from the Monitoring the Future Study and reports “Legitimate opioid use before high school graduation is independently associated with a 33% increase in the risk of future opioid misuse after high school. This association is concentrated among individuals who have little to no history of drug use and, as well, strong disapproval of illegal drug use at baseline.” These authors concluded “Use of prescribed opioids before the 12th grade is independently associated with future opioid misuse among patients with little drug experience and who disapprove of illegal drug use. Clinic-based education and prevention efforts have substantial potential to reduce future opioid misuse among these individuals, who begin opioid use with strong attitudes against illegal drug use. (Miech R et al. Prescription opioids in adolescence and future opioid misuse. 2015 Pediatrics 136 (5):e1169-e1177)