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INTRODUCTION: Opioid use disorder affects 2.1 million individuals in the USA, causing more than 100 000 overdose-related deaths annually. While the neurobiological model of addiction is well described and accepted, there is a lack of morbidity and mortality prognosticators for patients struggling with opioid use disorder. Allostatic load index is a promising candidate for the basis of a prognostication tool. Previous studies show that allostatic load predicts both morbidity and mortality in a variety of cohorts. This scoping review protocol provides the rationale and steps for summarizing and presenting existing evidence surrounding allostatic load in the context of opioid use disorder. Identification of current knowledge gaps will pave the way for subsequent prospective studies.

METHODS AND ANALYSIS: This scoping review protocol will follow the five-step method designed by Arksey and O'Malley. All studies written in English on allostatic load in the context of opioid use disorder, as defined in our inclusion criteria, will be included. There will be no limit on the year of publication. We will search PubMed, Embase, CINAHL, PsycINFO and Google Scholar. We will hand-review reference lists of included articles, and we will hand search grey literature. We will then group, analyze and present the data in narrative, tabular and diagrammatic format according to themes identified in the scoping review.

ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethics approval is not necessary, as data are gathered from publicly accessible sources. The results will be disseminated through a peer-reviewed journal and reported at conferences related to addiction medicine.



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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License