A retrospective cohort study using administrative health claims database from the Australian Government Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) has adults admitted to hospital for surgery and who were not taking opioids before the admission, examining the time to cessation of opioids (follow-up over 12 months). A patient was considered to have ceased the drugs if there was period without an opioid prescription that was equivalent to three times the estimated supply duration. Chronic opioid use was defined as those who continued taking opioids for greater than 90 days post discharge. Cumulative incidence function with death as a competing event was used to determine time to cessation of opioids post discharge.In the year over which the subjects were observed 24 854 persons had surgical admission and 3907 (15.7%) were discharged on opioid treatment. 3.9% of those discharged on opioids became chronic users of opioids. The drug most commonly involved was oxycodone (43%), while oxycodone with naloxone accounted for 8%. In view of how common surgical procedures are, the implication is that a large number of people in the population may be affected, emphasizing the importance of post-discharge follow-up of at-risk patients. The full manuscript can be viewed here