Tapentadol scripts rise by 40% amid overall decline in opioid prescribing

There has been a shift towards prescribing tapentadol over other opioids, says Dr Hester Wilson.
Rachel Fieldhouse
Dr Hester Wilson.

Tapentadol is the only PBS-listed opioid to see a significant growth in prescriptions over recent years, amid an overall decline for all other subsidised opioid analgesics, new data show.

A review by the PBAC’s Drug Utilisation Sub-Committee (DUSC) found that between 2018 and 2021 annual tapentadol prescriptions rose from nearly 820,000 to about 1.17 million — an increase of 43%.