Scientists say NOW is the time to stop smoking

November 04, 2002

After reviewing the literature on smoking cessation programs and other issues related to smoking, scientists from the University of Wisconsin and the University of Minnesota say that because evidence-based assistance to help individuals battle nicotine dependence is at an all-time high, there has been no better time than the present to try to stop smoking.

In an article in the October 9, 2002 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association the authors claim that if the smoking interventions that have been proven to be effective were broadly implemented, a larger proportion of the 46 million U.S. adult smokers would try to quit. They add that among those who would attempt to quit, the likelihood of success would be substantial.

Among the factors that clinicians can use to promote treatment of nicotine dependence, the investigators cite:The authors recommend that the 2000 U.S. Public Health Service Clinical Practice Guideline, Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence, should be used as a "roadmap" for intervention at the clinical level.

WHAT IT MEANS: Numerous strategies now exist producing reliable and substantial increases in smoking cessation. Their availability underscore the responsibility of every physician to counsel every tobacco user about the risks of smoking, the benefits of quitting, and how to quit.
The paper was published by Drs. Michael Fiore and Timothy Baker from the University of Wisconsin Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention and Dr. Dorothy Hatsukami of the University of Minnesota. All of the authors are participants in the Transdisciplinary Tobacco Use Research Center (TTURC) program. Seven TTURC centers are funded by the National Cancer Institute and NIDA to investigate new ways of combating tobacco use and nicotine addiction.

NIH/National Institute on Drug Abuse

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