NICOTINE FOR QUITTING….EFFECTIVE OR NOT?

A recent study of nicotine use in tobacco cessation has questioned it’s effectiveness, and even implies that it is counterproductive in people with the greatest nicotine dependence.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/10/health/study-finds-nicotine-gum-and-patches-dont-help-smokers-quit.html?hp

Although originally improved as an adjunct for smoking cessation, nicotine is used ‘willy nilly’ by patients in an effort to reduce their smoke exposure and to potentially quit. ¬†This study shows that there is not proof of benefit in the way most people use the medication and it calls into question the support and payment for this supplement by insurance carriers and the government for patients who are trying to quit.

Over $800 million is spent on these products yearly.  Although they may not help in quitting, it is possible that they do provide some benefit by giving people and opportunity to reduce their tobacco use and exposure, but this is of uncertain benefit.