Pain intensity and interference with functioning and well-being in subgroups of patients with chronic pain treated with once-daily hydrocodone tablets


  • Adrian Bartoli, MD
  • Edward Michna, MD
  • Ellie He, PhD
  • Warren Wen, PhD



hydrocodone, opioids, long-term


Background: A previous 52-week trial of patients with chronic noncancer, nonneuropathic pain (CNNP) showed clinically meaningful improvement in pain intensity, pain interference, and physical health-related quality of life (HRQL) following daily treatment with an extended-release, once-daily hydrocodone (Hysingla® ER; HYD) bitartrate tablet.

Objective: To examine treatment response within patient subgroups and to assess between-subgroup differences in effectiveness and side effect profile.

Methods: Data were from an open-label 52-week trial of treatment with HYD tablets (20-120 mg, once-daily) for patients with moderate-to-severe CNNP. Binary subgroups were defined for the following six factors: age, gender, opioid experience, baseline pain severity, history of depression, and stable HYD dose at completion of a 45-day dose-titration period. Univariable and multivariable models examined changes in average pain intensity (API; 11-point numeric rating scale), pain interference (Brief Pain Inventory-Interference subscale [BPI-I]), physical and mental HRQL (36-item Short Form health survey Physical and Mental Component Summaries [PCS and MCS]), and sleep quality (Medical Outcomes Study Sleep Scale Sleep Problems Index [SPI]) from baseline to maintenance, and subgroup differences in adverse events.

Results: All subgroups showed clinically meaningful improvements in API, BPII, and PCS scores; no subgroups showed improvements in MCS or SPI. Between subgroup comparisons found greater improvements for opioid-naïve patients and for patients with severe baseline pain. Incidence of adverse events differed minimally between subgroups.

Conclusion: Regardless of subgroup, patients with CNNP treated with HYD showed clinically meaningful improvements in pain intensity, pain interference, and physical HRQL, although not in mental HRQL or sleep quality. Improvements were generally larger for opioid-naïve patients and patients with severe baseline pain.

Author Biographies

Adrian Bartoli, MD

San Francisco Pain Management Center, San Francisco, California

Edward Michna, MD

Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts.


Ellie He, PhD

Purdue Pharma L.P., Stamford, Connecticut

Warren Wen, PhD

Purdue Pharma L.P., Stamford, Connecticut


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How to Cite

Bartoli, MD, A., Michna, MD, E., He, PhD, E., & Wen, PhD, W. (2015). Pain intensity and interference with functioning and well-being in subgroups of patients with chronic pain treated with once-daily hydrocodone tablets. Journal of Opioid Management, 11(6), 519–533.

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