Original article| Volume 99, ISSUE 5, P296-299, May 2019

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Claims for contraceptive services among young women filling chronic opioid prescriptions



      To describe claims for contraceptive services among reproductive-aged women filling chronic opioid prescriptions.

      Study design

      Using a large US commercial claims database, IMS Lifelink+, we identified women aged 15–44 years who filled chronic opioid prescriptions (defined as a 90-day supply of opioids without a 30-day gap over a 180-day time period) and had continuous pharmacy and medical enrollment for at least 90 days prior to and 180 days following their index opioid prescription. After excluding women with any claims for pregnancy-related services, we describe claims for contraceptive prescriptions.


      We identified 16,074 women with claims for chronic opioids who had filled an average of 135±28-day supply of opioids over a 180-day period. Of these, 23.4% (n=3759) had a claim for prescription contraception in the 90 days prior or 180 days following their index opioid claim. Of those who had claims for prescription contraception, 70% (n=2642) received oral contraceptives; only 2% had claims related to a long-acting reversible contraceptive (i.e., a contraceptive implant or intrauterine device).


      Commercially insured women filling chronic opioid prescriptions may have unmet needs for prescription contraception.


      Efforts are needed to ensure that the reproductive health needs of women filling chronic opioid prescriptions are met.


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