Opioid use in pregnancy has escalated dramatically in recent years, paralleling the epidemic observed in the general population. To combat the opioid epidemic, all health care providers need to take an active role. Pregnancy provides an important opportunity to identify and treat women with substance use disorders. Substance use disorders affect women across all racial and ethnic groups and all socioeconomic groups, and affect women in rural, urban, and suburban populations. Therefore, it is essential that screening be universal. Screening for substance use should be a part of comprehensive obstetric care and should be done at the first prenatal visit in partnership with the pregnant woman. Patients who use opioids during pregnancy represent a diverse group, and it is important to recognize and differentiate between opioid use in the context of medical care, opioid misuse, and untreated opioid use disorder. Multidisciplinary long-term follow-up should include medical, developmental, and social support. Infants born to women who used opioids during pregnancy should be monitored for neonatal abstinence syndrome by a pediatric care provider. Early universal screening, brief intervention (such as engaging a patient in a short conversation, providing feedback and advice), and referral for treatment of pregnant women with opioid use and opioid use disorder improve maternal and infant outcomes. In general, a coordinated multidisciplinary approach without criminal sanctions has the best chance of helping infants and families.
For a comprehensive overview of these recommendations, the full-text version of this Committee Opinion is available athttp://dx.doi.org/10.1097/AOG.0000000000002235.
Committee on Obstetric Practice American Society of Addiction Medicine:The Society of Maternal–Fetal Medicine endorses this document. This Committee Opinion was developed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ Committee on Obstetric Practice in collaboration with committee members Maria A. Mascola, MD, MPH; Ann E. Borders, MD, MSc, MPH; and the American Society of Addiction Medicine member Mishka Terplan, MD, MPH.
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Official Citation: Opioid use and opioid use disorder in pregnancy. Committee Opinion No. 711. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Obstet Gynecol 2017;130:e81–94.
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Received July 04, 2017
Accepted July 04, 2017