E-cigarettes effective aid for quitting traditional cigarettes, says study

E-cigarettes effective aid for quitting traditional cigarettes, says study

  • May 2019
  • Posted By James Lawson

Researchers from University College London have found that people using e-cigarettes to help them quit smoking traditional cigarettes are 95% more likely to succeed than those who were not using any types of ‘stop-smoking aids.’ Their study was published last week in the journal Addiction.

The researchers compared the effectiveness of e-cigarettes, Champix (a Pfizer brand of the prescription drug, varenicline), and nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) gum and patches in getting people to stop smoking traditional cigarettes. Other approaches evaluated by the research team included face-to-face and telephone behavioural support, self-help websites, self-help materials, and hypnotherapy. The study evaluated the success rates of 18,929 people in England who tried to quit smoking during the past year. The team had gathered behavioural data on the individuals from 2006 to 2018.

The study showed that individuals who had received a Champix prescription were 82% more likely to stop smoking when compared to those not using any type of aid. E-cigarettes users did better, with a 95% success rate compared to those who used nothing to help them quit smoking. NRT proved to be the least effective, with only 34% more likely to stop smoking. While self-help websites showed some effectiveness in helping people quit, especially those with lower socioeconomic status, the other approaches were found to be ineffective in helping people to stop smoking.

Sarah Jackson, the study’s lead author and a professor at University College London, said the study adds to the growing body of evidence of the effectiveness of e-cigarettes in helping smokers to kick their habit, but that she is concerned about the relative ineffectiveness of NRT shown in the study.


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