An evidence-based guide to smoking cessation therapies

Anna Marshall, Faraz Siddiqui, Omara Fatima Dogar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Despite a general decline in smoking in the UK, prevalence remains high in
certain groups such as young adults, pregnant women, those who have a
mental Illness and those from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds.
These groups are also more likely to benefit from targeted smoking cessation
interventions. Clinical contact between health professionals and patients
who smoke creates an opportunity for offering cessation interventions and to
reduce smoking-related harm. This article summarises evidence reported in
high-quality systematic reviews on smoking cessation interventions that could
be offered by health professionals coming in to contact with patients who
smoke. The evidence presented here suggests that brief advice by a health
professional is beneficial in achieving smoking cessation and so is intensive
behavioural support, alone or in combination with pharmacotherapies (nicotine
replacement therapies [NRTs], bupropion and varenicline). Pharmacotherapies
are also effective individually in achieving smoking cessation; a combination
of NRTs (oral or skin patch) can be particularly helpful among highly dependent
smokers. Pharmacotherapies in combination with behavioural support
delivered in healthcare settings are more effective than when used alone and
delivered in community settings, respectively. Electronic cigarettes are also
effective in achieving smoking cessation and are more effective than NRT.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)326-335
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Prescribing Practice
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 2023

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