Although limiting opioid analgesic prescribing to situations for which benefits outweigh risks can improve individual and population health, rapidly decreasing or abruptly discontinuing long-term opioid analgesics can significantly increase the risk of adverse consequences, including opioid-related hospitalizations and emergency department visits. To help clinicians reduce risks and improve outcomes related to opioid dose reduction and discontinuation among patients prescribed opioids to manage pain (particularly chronic pain), the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) developed the HHS Guide for Clinicians on the Appropriate Dosage Reduction or Discontinuation of Long-Term Opioid Analgesics.

https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2753129