By Dr. Brian McDonough

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A new study provides even more reason why physicians should be very careful about prescribing opioid medications to patients.

According to researchers at Magellan Health in Scottsdale, over 50 percent of patients who quit opioids for six months will resume use sometime thereafter. A significant number of patients pick up the habit with prescription drugs.

The information is very important for physicians because what they found is that once physicians prescribe opioid medications to patients, a certain percentage will continue to take opioids and try to increase to higher doses.

Certain people were found to be high risk patients: they included people with back problems, substance-related addictive disorders, sleep weight disorders, depressive disorders, and anxiety disorders.

This by no means suggested that everyone with these problems would have an issue, but the opioid addiction was found higher in those groups and physicians should take note.

Dr. Brian McDonough