Wednesday, November 4, 2009

UW-CTRI: Combining cessation medications best for successfully quitting.

Earlier this week UW-Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention (UW-CTRI) released a new study about the effectiveness of common quit-smoking strategies . The study compared a variety of nicotine replacement therapies such as lozenges, the patch, buproprion (brand name Wellbutrin). They also examined combinations such as  the patch and the lozenge or buproprion and the lozenge. They also measured effectiveness of a placebo. They did not examine varenicline (brand name Chantix) the nasal spray, gum, or other methods.

This study found that combining over-the-counter (OTC) nicotine replacement patches and nicotine replacement lozenges lead to more successful attempts to quit. Using any one of the methods was more effective than trying to quit with the placebo, the equivalent to cold turkey. This study is important in a number of ways. Most notably and especially timely is that many people who smoke do not have healthcare or have limited access to their doctor. People who make the choice to quit can take the money that would have gone to purchasing tobacco and pick up OTC smoking cessation methods.

While it is important to talk to a physician whenever making decisions about your health, for those who lack access to medical providers, there is some hope.


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