Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Money spent on nicotine patches 'goes up in smoke', says survey

 

Those who go cold turkey have just as much chance of quitting the habit long-term, the study published on Monday added. A total of 787 adult smokers trying to quit were followed over five years by researchers at Harvard School of Public Health. One in three relapsed with the numbers spread equally between those going ‘cold turkey’, those using nicotine patches, gums or sprays, and those combining nicotine replacement with counselling. Heavy smokers who used nicotine replacement products without any professional therapy were twice as likely to relapse. Lead author Hillel Alpert said: ‘Some heavily-dependent smokers perceive nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) as a sort of “magic” pill. ‘Upon realising it is not, they find themselves without support in their quitting efforts, doomed to failure.’ But the findings sparked a backlash from the NRT industry, which is worth £150million in Britain and £520million in the US. GlaxoSmithKline, which makes Nicorette gum, said studies show NRT products, combined with support, ‘can double’ smokers’ chances of quitting

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