Nicotine gum has been in use for over 20 years to help smokers quit abruptly yet close to two-thirds of smokers report that they would prefer to quit gradually.
Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare have now found that smokers who are trying to quit gradually can also be helped by nicotine gum. The results of the first study to test the efficacy and safety of using nicotine gum to assist cessation by gradual reduction are published in the February 2009 issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Almost 3300 smokers participated in this double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Participants were enrolled in 27 study sites across the US. Participants were allowed to choose between 2-mg and 4-mg doses of nicotine gum, with the higher doses generally being selected by heavier smokers. Within each dose group, participants were then randomized to receive either the active gum or a placebo, yielding 4 approximately equal groups.
The study assessed initial 24-hour abstinence and 28-day abstinence, and participants were followed up at 6 months to determine overall success rates for quitting. The odds of smokers achieving 24-hour abstinence were 40 to 90% higher using active gum compared to placebo, and 2 to 4.7 times higher for attaining 28-day abstinence. At the end of 6 months, while absolute quit rates were somewhat low, the odds of quitting were about 2 to 6 times greater for active gum users as for the placebo users, with a quit rate of 6% in the 4-mg group.
The study also evaluated the safety of using nicotine gum while reducing smoking. The authors report that no unexpected adverse events were observed, even among those who most heavily smoked and used gum, concluding that “Using nicotine gum while smoking carries little to no incremental risk.”
Writing in the article, Saul Shiffman, states, “This is the first study to demonstrate that smokers wanting to quit by gradual reduction can substantially increase their success by using nicotine gum to facilitate reduction and cessation. Nicotine gum helped smokers reduce smoking, achieve initial abstinence and maintain abstinence. The advantage of active nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) treatment is particularly evident for heavy smokers treated with the 4-mg nicotine gum, for which treatment increased the odds of quitting for 6 months sixfold.
This expands treatment options for the substantial proportion of smokers who prefer quitting gradually, who have relatively low chances of quitting and who have heretofore been implicitly excluded from the use of NRT to help them quit. Offering this new way to use NRT may enhance the appeal and reach of a treatment that increases success, and thereby have positive public health impact. Given the ongoing extraordinary health toll from smoking, consideration should be given to novel approaches that increase success in quitting.”
AJPM Editorial Office | alfa
Spread of deadly eye cancer halted in cells and animals
13.11.2018 | Johns Hopkins Medicine
Breakthrough in understanding how deadly pneumococcus avoids immune defenses
13.11.2018 | University of Liverpool
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure
Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...
Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly
The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
23.10.2018 | Event News
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Awards Funding