Younger age at intracranial aneurysms rupture among patients with opioid use disorders

Santiago R. Unda, Aldana M. Antoniazzi, Rafael de la Garza Ramos, Irene Osborn, Neil Haranhalli, David J. Altschul

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Association between opioid abuse and intracranial aneurysms rupture has been suggested in recent studies. However, these observations are limited to single center studies and could be benefited from validation in larger cohorts. Hence, we aimed to study the association between age at aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH) and opioid use disorders (OUD) using a large, national database. Methods: This study was conducted using the 2016 and 2017 National Inpatient Sample (NIS) with ICD-10 codes. Cohorts were categorized as “Non-users”, “OUD”, and “Multi-drug users”. Linear regression models were used to examine the association between OUD and multi-drug users with age at aneurysm rupture, and multiple logistic regression models were used for the association between in-hospital mortality and drug abuse. Results: A total of 17,391 patients with aSAH were captured in the 2016 and 2017 NIS database. Out of these patients, 235 (1.4%) were included in the OUD group and 59 (0.3%) in the multi-drug users’ group. Adjusted linear regression showed an unstandardized coefficient (UC) = −12.3 [95%CI = −14.4/−10.1, p < 0.001] for OUD patients and an UC = −16.8 [95%CI = −21.1/−12.5, p < 0.001] for multi-drug users, compared to non-users. The risk of in-hospital mortality was significantly increased in drug user, OR = 1.47 [95%CI: 1.1–2.01, p = 0.017] for OUD patients, and OR = 2.35 [95%CI: 1.35–4.11, p = 0.003] for multi-drug users. Conclusions: This is the first national study to examine the association between age at intracranial aneurysms rupture and opioid abuse. aSAH patients with history of OUD were 12 years younger compared to non-users, when OUD was combined with other drugs, the age at aneurysms rupture was 17 years younger. Further elucidation regarding the mechanisms by which opioids triggers aneurysms rupture and predispose to worsen outcomes following aSAH is required, as well as appropriate prevention, and management strategies for aSAH patients with OUD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)204-208
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Neuroscience
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • Aneurysms
  • Drugs
  • National inpatient sample
  • Opioids
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Younger age at intracranial aneurysms rupture among patients with opioid use disorders'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this