Although there are screening tools to aid clinicians in assessing the risk of opioid misuse, an instrument to assess opioid-related knowledge is not currently available. The purpose of this study was to develop a content-valid, understandable, readable, and reliable Patient Opioid Education Measure (POEM).
Using concept mapping, clinicians caring for patients with chronic pain participated in brainstorming, sorting, and rating need-to-know information for patients prescribed opioids. Concept mapping analyses identified seven clusters addressing knowledge and expectations associated with opioid use, including medicolegal issues, prescribing policies, safe use and handling, expected outcomes, side effects, pharmacology, and warnings.
The 49-item POEM was verbally administered to 83 patients (average age 51.3 ± 9.8 years, 77.1% female, 47.1% African American) taking opioids for chronic nonmalignant pain. Patients averaged in total 63.9% ± 14.3% (range 23%–91%) correct responses on the POEM. The POEM demonstrated substantial test-retest reliability (interclass correlation coefficient 0.87). The POEM had a mean readability Lexile (L) score of 805.9 ± 257.3 L (equivalent to approximately a US fifth grade reading level), with individual items ranging from 280 L to 1370 L.