GVR Report cover Opioids Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Opioids Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (IR/ Short Acting Opioids, ER/Long-Acting Opioids), By Application (Pain Relief, Anesthesia), By Route Of Administration, By Distribution Channel, And Segment Forecasts, 2022 - 2030

  • Report ID: GVR-2-68038-131-3
  • Number of Pages: 120
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Range: 2018 - 2020
  • Industry: Healthcare

Report Overview

The global opioids market size was valued at USD 22.66 billion in 2021 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1.2% from 2022 to 2030. Increasing approval and the launch of new opioid medicines to treat patients with chronic pain are the factors expected to drive market growth. For instance, in August 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Olinvyk (oliceridine) injection developed by Trevena, Inc., for treating adults with acute pain. Olinvyk is an opioid agonist administrated intravenously to patients and costs around USD 194 for a supply of 10 mL. During the initial phase of COVID -19, the market for opioids was negatively impacted due to the low hospitalization rate, COVID-19-mandated changes in policy, decline in surgeries, and dental procedures led to a reduction in opioid prescriptions. According to the National Library of Medicine report (July 2022), the prescription-based opioid purchasing rate declined by 23.8% in the five years before the pandemic. Developed countries like the U.S. and Canada witnessed a decline in opioids prescription after March 2020.

U.S. opioids market size, by product, 2020 - 2030 (USD Billion)

Elder population is at high risk of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, arthritis, and cancer due to the high comorbid conditions. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the geriatric population increased from 1.0 million in 2020 to 1.4 million in 2021. Declining fertility and mortality rates are some of the factors contributing to rising in the geriatric population. The impact of chronic pain increases with age and is highest among adults aged 65 years and above. Therefore, the rising geriatric population is anticipated to increase demand for the opioid drugs to manage chronic pain. 

However, the side effects associated with drug addiction, and misuse may restrain the market growth. According to the WHO, around 0.5 million people died due to the misuse of drugs in 2021. Furthermore, the Millennium Health’s Signals report (2020) revealed that there was a rise in non-prescribed fentanyl by 32.0%, methamphetamine by 20.0%, and Cocaine by 10.0% from March to May 2020. Thus, the implementation of strict regulation on the use of opioids is expected to restrain the market growth during the forecast period.

Product Insights

Based on product, the global opioids market is segmented into IR/ short-acting opioids and ER/long-acting opioids. ER/long-acting opioids dominated the segment in 2021 and are also expected to be the fastest-growing segment during the forecast period. This dominance can be attributed to the wide availability of extended-release long-acting opioids. Some of the commonly prescribed ER/long-acting opioids include Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Methadone, Fentanyl, Morphine, and Oxymorphone. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid approved for treating severe chronic pain that arises in advanced-stage cancer patients. Thus, the rising incidence of chronic diseases is expected to fuel segment growth. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about six in ten people in the U.S. suffer from chronic diseases such as cancer, stroke, cardiovascular diseases, and diabetes. Patients with these chronic diseases witness severe pain, consequently, increasing demand for extended-release tablets for pain relief, thereby, driving the segment growth.

Application Insights

Based on application, the global opioids market is segmented into anesthesia, pain relief, cough suppression, de-addiction, and diarrhea suppression. The pain relief segment dominated the market in 2021. This can be attributed to the increased demand for opioids for the management of postoperative pain. According to the National Library of Medicine (2020), globally around 310.0 million surgeries are performed annually; out of which 20.0 million and 40.0 to 50.0 million surgeries are performed in Europe and the U.S. respectively. Thus, an increasing number of surgical operations, consequently, augment demand for medicines to manage post-operative pain. 

Anesthesia is estimated to be the fastest-growing segment during the forecast period. Intravenous opioids are commonly used to provide analgesia and supplement sedation during general anesthesia. Thus, increasing practices of anesthesia are anticipated to boost demand for intravenous opioids, thereby, driving the market growth. 

Route Of Administration Insights

Based on the route of administration, the global opioids market is segmented into oral, injectables, and others. The injectable segment dominated the market in 2021. This can be attributed to the increasing approval of novel opioid injectables. For instance, in April 2021, the U.S. FDA approved morphine sulfate injection; an opioid analgesic for the management of severe pain arising due to different conditions. This approval is anticipated to drive segment growth. 

Oral is anticipated to be the fastest-growing segment during the forecast period due to the approval of opioid tablets. For instance, in October 2021, the U.S. FDA approved celecoxib and tramadol hydrochloride (Seglentis), a combined non-steroidal anti-inflammatory and opioid agonist for the treatment of adults with acute pain. Such approvals and the introduction of the products are expected to fuel segment growth. 

Distribution Channel Insights

Based on distribution channel, the global opioids market is segmented into hospital pharmacies, retail pharmacies, and others. The retail pharmacy segment dominated the market in 2021 and is also expected to witness the fastest growth during the forecast period owing to the easy availability of medicines at retail pharmacies and the high opioid dispensing rate. According to the CDC, around 142.81 million opioid prescriptions were registered in the U.S., with an opioid dispensing rate of 43.3 per 100 people in 2020. Thus, the high prescription is anticipated to segment growth.

Global opioids market share, by distribution channel, 2021 (%)

Regional Insights

North America dominated the global industry in 2021 and accounted for the maximum share of 64.11% of the global revenue. This dominance can be attributed to the increasing approval of opioid-based medicines to meet the growing unmet medical needs in the region. For instance, in May 2020, Hikma Pharmaceuticals launched a generic version of Buprenex, Buprenorphine Hydrochloride Injection; in the U.S. Buprenex is a prescription opioid for the treatment of patients with moderate to severe pain. This injection helps in severe pain management. It costs around USD 89 for a 5mL solution of injection administrated intravenously.

Docks Market Trends by Region

Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest-growing region during the forecast period. The growth of the region can be attributed to the initiatives undertaken by the government to control opioid misuse in the region. For instance, in February 2022, the New Zealand Medicines and Medical Devices Safety Authority (Med safe) planning to issue warning labels about risk associated with opioid overdose on opioid medicines. This measure may increase the prescription rate for high-quality of opioid intended for pain management, thereby, driving opioid market growth. 

Key Companies & Market Share Insights 

Major players are adopting strategies such as mergers & acquisitions for regional expansion and for greater market share. For instance, in August 2022, Adalvo acquired Onsolis a branded opioid product from a reputed U.S.-based specialty pharmacy company. This opioid is indicated for the management of chronic pain in cancer. This acquisition strengthens the company’s opioid product portfolio and offers a high growth opportunity for the company. Some of the prominent players in the global opioids market include:

  • Purdue Pharma L.P.

  • Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc.

  • Hikma Pharmaceuticals PLC

  • Pfizer, Inc.

  • AbbVie Inc.

  • Sanofi

  • Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd

  • Grünenthal 

Opioids Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2022

USD 22.77 billion

Revenue forecast in 2030

USD 25.33 billion

Growth rate

CAGR of 1.2% from 2022 to 2030

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2018 - 2020

Forecast period

2022 - 2030

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD million, CAGR from 2022 to 2030

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, trends

Segments covered

Product, application, route of administration, distribution channel, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Latin America; Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; UK; Germany; France; Spain; Italy; China; Japan; India; Australia; South Korea; Brazil; Mexico; Argentina; South Africa; Saudi Arabia; UAE

Key companies profiled

Purdue Pharma L.P.; Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc.; Hikma Pharmaceuticals PLC; Pfizer, Inc.; AbbVie Inc.; Sanofi; Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd; Grünenthal

Customization scope

Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analysts working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional & segment scope.

Pricing and purchase options

Avail customized purchase options to meet your exact research needs. Explore purchase options


Global Opioids Market Segmentation

The report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-markets from 2018 to 2030. For this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global opioids market based on the product, application, route of administration, distribution channel, and region:

  • Product Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)

    • IR/Short-Acting Opioids

      • Immediate-Release/Short-Acting Opioid, by Product

        • Codeine

        • Oxycodone

        • Hydrocodone

        • Fentanyl

        • Morphine

        • Hydroxymorphone

        • Oxymorphone

        • Propoxyphene

        • Other IR

      • Immediate-Release/Short-Acting Opioid, by Application

        • Pain Relief

        • Anesthesia

        • Cough Suppression

        • Diarrhea Suppression

        • De-addiction

    • ER/Long-Acting Opioids

      • Extended-Release/Long-Acting Opioid, by Product

        • Oxycodone

        • Hydrocodone

        • Methadone

        • Fentanyl

        • Morphine

        • Oxymorphone

        • Tapentadol

        • Buprenorphine

        • Hydromorphone

        • Other ER

      • Extended-Release/Long-Acting Opioid, by Application

        • Pain Relief

        • Anesthesia

        • Cough Suppression

        • Diarrhea Suppression

        • De-addiction

  • Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)

    • Pain Relief

    • Anesthesia

    • Cough Suppression

    • Diarrhea Suppression

    • De-addiction

  • Route of Administration Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)

    • Oral

    • Injectable

    • Others

  • Distribution Channel Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)

    • Hospital Pharmacy

    • Retail Pharmacy

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018- 2030)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • UK

      • France

      • Italy

      • Spain

    • Asia Pacific

      • Japan

      • China

      • India

      • Australia

      • South Korea

    • Latin America

      • Brazil

      • Mexico

      • Argentina

    • Middle East and Africa (MEA)

      • South Africa

      • Saudi Arabia

      • UAE

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