Back Pain and Opioid Abuse: Managing a Slippery Slope (NA1732)

Author(s): Patsy Barnes, RN, BA

Pre-Approved for: ABVE, ACM, CA BRN, CCAPP, CCM, CDMS, CE Broker Provider, CLCP, CNLCP, COHN/COHN-S, COPS-KT, CRC, CRRN, CVE, CVRP, Delaware BON, MCBAP-Specific , MSCC, NAADAC, RNs, VRA-Canada

Credit Hours: 4

Course Format

This course is online. All course material is available online and is accessible immediately after purchase from your account homepage. Certificate of Completion is available immediately upon passing the exam.

Course Overview

This class will explore the management of back pain, including opioids as well as other medications and, specifically, the danger of opioid management.  There is an overview of the current epidemic of opioid abuse and the connection between management of back pain and the slippery slope of narcotic abuse and overdose. Other contributions to the epidemic, including the patients’ responsibilities and the healthcare providers’ responsibilities, are presented.  


  • Overview of back pain management
  • Overview of opioid epidemic
  • The human connection
  • The healthcare providers connection  

Course Objectives

  1. State the standard of care for back pain including opioid prescriptions.

  2. Discuss the current statistics of the opioid epidemic in the USA.

  3. Compare and contrast the benefits and risks of opioid pain management.

  4. Distinguish between narcotic tolerance, narcotic abuse, and narcotic addiction.

  5. List the current recommendations for the healthcare provider in the management of opioids.

  6. Explain the contribution of culture and patient responsibility in the current epidemic.

Customer Testimonial

Really appreciated the fact this article did take into account people on Narcotics for "real" pain are being under treated and also made to feel like 'the bad guy" Many people need these drugs to carry on a normal or close to normal life and this article was fair to both aspects of the sides.
Kimberly K.