Event 1: Meet Eric

Head and shoulders shot of Eric, a young, clean-shaven man wearing a baseball hat

Eric is a 23-year-old man actively using IV heroin. He presents with right leg pain and swelling after injecting heroin into the muscle.

Labs are notable for white blood cell count of greater than 60,000.

Medical Notes

  • History of appendectomy; no other known medical problems.
  • Diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis and admitted to the ICU.
  • Requires debridement in the operating room and extensive wound care on the nursing unit.
  • Has recently been on methadone maintenance, but stopped within the past several months.

Question: Compared to the general population, patients with OUD:

(Choose all that may apply)



Degenhardt L, Bucello C, Mathers B, Briegleb C, Ali H, Hickman M, McLaren J. Mortality among regular or dependent users of heroin and other opioids: a systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies. Addiction 2011;106(1):32-51. PMID:21054613 DOI:10.1111/j.1360-0443.2010.03140.x

Grella CE, Lovinger K. Gender differences in physical and mental health outcomes among an aging cohort of invidividuals with a history of heroin dependence. Addict Behav 2012;37(3):306-312. PMID: 22154506 PMCID: PMC3258372 DOI:10.1016/j.addbeh.2011.11.028

Walley AY, Paasche-Orlow M, Lee EC, Forsythe S, Chetty VK, Mitchell S, Jack BW. Acute care hospital utilization among medical inpatients discharged with a substance use disorder diagnosis. J Addict Med 2012;6(1):50-56. PMID: 21979821 DOI:10.1097/ADM.0b013e318231de51

Additional Resources for Opioid Use Disorder

To learn more about:

  • Opioid use disorder diagnostic criteria
  • Addiction: a neurobiological disease
  • The opioid epidemic
  • Challenges encountered with patients with OUD

Click the "Opioid Use Disorder (OUD)" tab.


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