Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Nicotine patches do not appear to help pregnant smokers to quit, study shows

Date:
March 11, 2014
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
Nicotine patches do not appear to help pregnant smokers to quit, according to a study. Smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes and may have long lasting effects in offspring. In England, 26% of women smoke in the year before their pregnancy and 12% smoke through to delivery. The rate is similar or even higher in other high income countries. Guidelines suggest adding nicotine replacement therapies (NRT) to behavioral smoking cessation support in pregnant smokers because of their excellent safety profile and proved effectiveness in other groups of smokers. However, there is a lack of good quality evidence on the effectiveness of NRT in pregnant smokers.

Smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes and may have long lasting effects in offspring. In England, 26% of women smoke in the year before their pregnancy and 12% smoke through to delivery. The rate is similar or even higher in other high income countries.

Guidelines suggest adding nicotine replacement therapies (NRT) to behavioral smoking cessation support in pregnant smokers because of their excellent safety profile and proved effectiveness in other groups of smokers. However, there is a lack of good quality evidence on the effectiveness of NRT in pregnant smokers.

So a team of researchers based in France set out to assess the efficacy of 16 hour nicotine patches among 402 pregnant women aged over 18 years and between 12 and 20 weeks' gestation, who smoked at least five cigarettes a day.

Participants were randomized to receive either nicotine patches or placebo patches up to the time of delivery. Doses were individually adjusted to try to match participants' nicotine intake to that achieved by smoking.

Participants were assessed monthly and received behavioral smoking cessation support. The primary outcome measures were complete abstinence (confirmed by levels of carbon monoxide in expired air) and birth weight.

Nicotine patches offered no benefit over placebo in terms of increasing smoking cessation or birth weight.

Complete abstinence was achieved by only 11 (5.5%) of women in the nicotine patch group and only 10 (5.1%) in the placebo patch group. The average time to the first cigarette smoked after target quit date was 15 days in both groups.

Average birth weight was 3065g in the nicotine patch group and 3015g in the placebo patch group.

Blood pressure was significantly higher with the nicotine patch than with placebo, suggesting that further studies with nicotine in pregnant smokers should control for blood pressure, they add.

"These are disappointing results and should encourage efforts to evaluate new approaches that are both drug and non-drug related," conclude the authors. "In the absence of evidence based drug interventions, behavioral support remains the core intervention to help pregnant smokers to quit."

In an accompanying editorial, Leonie Brose at the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, points to the delay in behavioral support in the first two weeks of the study, and suggests this may explain why both groups had low success rates.

However, she says, in contrast with disappointing results and a slim evidence base for drug treatment, good evidence shows that psychological interventions help pregnant smokers to quit.

"It may be too early to abandon the option of NRT entirely," she writes. "However, a much greater effort is still needed to identify, test, and deliver more effective treatments for pregnant smokers who struggle to quit."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Ivan Berlin et al. Nicotine patches in pregnant smokers: randomised, placebo controlled, multicentre trial of efficacy. BMJ, March 2014 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.g1622

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Nicotine patches do not appear to help pregnant smokers to quit, study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140311184658.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2014, March 11). Nicotine patches do not appear to help pregnant smokers to quit, study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140311184658.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Nicotine patches do not appear to help pregnant smokers to quit, study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140311184658.htm (accessed August 23, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) According to a new study, elderly people might have trouble sleeping because of the loss of a certain group of neurons in the brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) A new study found couples who had at least 150 guests at their weddings were more likely to report being happy in their marriages. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) Nine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New Orleans. The state of Louisiana took over most of the city's public schools after the killer storm in 2005. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins