Addiction Rehab: Incentives for Preventing Smoking in Children and Adolescents.

Incentives for preventing smoking in children and adolescents.

Filed under: Addiction Rehab

Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2012; 10: CD008645
Johnston V, Liberato S, Thomas D

Adult smoking usually has its roots in adolescence. If individuals do not take up smoking during this period it is unlikely that they ever will. Further, once smoking becomes established, cessation is challenging; the probability of subsequently quitting is inversely proportional to the age of initiation. One novel approach to reducing the prevalence of youth smoking is the use of incentives.To determine whether incentives prevent children and adolescents from starting to smoke. We also attempted to assess the dose-response of incentives, the costs of incentive programmes, whether incentives are more or less effective in combination with other interventions to prevent smoking initiation and any unintended consequences arising from the use of incentives.We searched the Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Group Specialized Register, with additional searches of MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, CSA databases and PsycINFO for terms relating to incentives, in combination with terms for smoking and tobacco use, and children and adolescents. The most recent searches were in May 2012.We considered randomized controlled trials allocating children and adolescents (aged 5 to 18 years) as individuals, groups or communities to intervention or control conditions, where the intervention included an incentive aimed at preventing smoking uptake. We also considered controlled trials with baseline measures and post-intervention outcomes.Data were extracted by two authors and assessed independently. The primary outcome was the smoking status of children or adolescents at follow-up who reported no smoking at baseline. We required a minimum follow-up of six months from baseline and assessed each included study for risk of bias. We used the most rigorous definition of abstinence in each trial; we did not require biochemical validation of self-reported tobacco use for study inclusion. Where possible we combined eligible studies to calculate pooled estimates at the longest follow-up using the Mantel-Haenszel fixed-effect method, grouping studies by study design.We identified seven controlled studies that met our inclusion criteria, including participants with an age range of 11 to 14 years. Of the seven trials identified, only five had analysable data relevant for this review and contributed to the meta-analysis (6362 participants in total who were non-smokers at baseline; 3466 in intervention and 2896 in control). All bar one of the studies was a trial of the so-called Smokefree Class Competition (SFC), which has been widely implemented throughout Europe. In this competition, classes with youth generally between the ages of 11 to 14 years commit to being smoke free for a six month period. They report regularly on their smoking status; if 90% or more of the class is non-smoking at the end of the six months, the class goes into a competition to win prizes. The one study that was not a trial of the SFC was a controlled trial in which schools in two communities were assigned to the intervention, with schools in a third community acting as controls. Students in the intervention community with lower smoking rates at the end of the project (one school year) received rewards.Only one study of the SFC competition, a non-randomized controlled trial, reported a significant effect of the competition on the prevention of smoking at the longest follow-up. However, this study had a risk of multiple biases, and when we calculated the adjusted RR we no longer detected a statistically significant difference. The pooled RR for the more robust RCTs (3 studies, n = 3056 participants) suggests that, from the available data, there is no statistically significant effect of incentives to prevent smoking initiation among children and adolescents in the long term (RR 1.00, 95% CI 0.84 to 1.19). Pooled results from non-randomized trials also did not detect a significant effect, and we were unable to extract data on our outcome of interest for the one trial that did not study the SFC. There is little robust evidence to suggest that unintended consequences (such as youth making false claims about their smoking status and bullying of smoking students) are consistently associated with such interventions, although this has not been the focus of much research. There was insufficient information to assess the dose-response relationship or to report costs.To date, incentive programmes have not been shown to prevent smoking initiation among youth, although there are relatively few published studies and these are of variable quality. Trials included in this meta-analysis were all studies of the SFC competition, which distributed small to moderately sized prizes to whole classes, usually through a lottery system.Future studies might investigate the efficacy of incentives given to individual participants to prevent smoking uptake. Future research should consider the efficacy of incentives on smoking initiation, as well as progression of smoking, evaluate these in varying populations from different socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds, and describe the intervention components in detail.
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Combined pharmacotherapy and behavioural interventions for smoking cessation.

Filed under: Addiction Rehab

Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2012; 10: CD008286
Stead LF, Lancaster T

Both behavioural support (including brief advice and counselling) and pharmacotherapies (including nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), varenicline and bupropion) are effective in helping people to stop smoking. Combining both treatment approaches is recommended where possible, but the size of the treatment effect with different combinations and in different settings and populations is unclear.To assess the effect of combining behavioural support and medication to aid smoking cessation, compared to a minimal intervention or usual care, and to identify whether there are different effects depending on characteristics of the treatment setting, intervention, population treated, or take-up of treatment.We searched the Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Group Specialised Register in July 2012 for records with any mention of pharmacotherapy, including any type of NRT, bupropion, nortriptyline or varenicline.Randomized or quasi-randomized controlled trials evaluating combinations of pharmacotherapy and behavioural support for smoking cessation, compared to a control receiving usual care or brief advice or less intensive behavioural support. We excluded trials recruiting only pregnant women, trials recruiting only adolescents, and trials with less than six months follow-up.Search results were prescreened by one author and inclusion or exclusion of potentially relevant trials was agreed by both authors. Data was extracted by one author and checked by the other.The main outcome measure was abstinence from smoking after at least six months of follow-up. We used the most rigorous definition of abstinence for each trial, and biochemically validated rates if available. We calculated the risk ratio (RR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) for each study. Where appropriate, we performed meta-analysis using a Mantel-Haenszel fixed-effect model.Forty-one studies with a total of more than 20,000 participants met the inclusion criteria. A large proportion of studies recruited people in healthcare settings or with specific health needs. Most studies provided NRT. Behavioural support was typically provided by specialists in cessation counselling, who offered between four and eight contact sessions. The planned maximum duration of contact was typically more than 30 minutes but less than 300 minutes. Overall, studies were at low or unclear risk of bias, and findings were not sensitive to the exclusion of any of the three studies rated at high risk of bias in one domain. One large study (the Lung Health Study) contributed heterogeneity due to a substantially larger treatment effect than seen in other studies (RR 3.88, 95% CI 3.35 to 4.50). Since this study used a particularly intensive intervention which included extended availability of nicotine gum, multiple group sessions and long term maintenance and recycling contacts, the results may not be comparable with the interventions used in other studies, and hence it was not pooled in other analyses. Based on the remaining 40 studies (15,021 participants) there was good evidence for a benefit of combination pharmacotherapy and behavioural treatment compared to usual care or brief advice or less intensive behavioural support (RR 1.82, 95% CI 1.66 to 2.00) with moderate statistical heterogeneity (I² = 40%). The pooled estimate for 31 trials that recruited participants in healthcare settings (RR 2.06, 95% CI 1.81 to 2.34) was higher than for eight trials with community-based recruitment (RR 1.53, 95% CI 1.33 to 1.76). Pooled estimates were lower in a subgroup of trials where the behavioural intervention was provided by specialist counsellors versus trials where counselling was linked to usual care (specialist: RR 1.73, 95% CI 1.55 to 1.93, 28 trials; usual provider: RR 2.41, 95% CI 1.91 to 3.02, 8 trials) but this was largely attributable to the small effect size in two trials using specialist counsellors where the take-up of the planned intervention was low, and one usual provider trial with alarge effect. There was little indirect evidence that the relative effect of an intervention differed according to whether participants in a trial were required to be motivated to make a quit attempt or not. There was only weak evidence that studies offering more sessions had larger effects and there was not clear evidence that increasing the duration of contact increased the effect, but there was more evidence of a dose-response relationship when analyses were limited to trials where the take-up of treatment was high.Interventions that combine pharmacotherapy and behavioural support increase smoking cessation success compared to a minimal intervention or usual care. Further trials would be unlikely to change this conclusion. We did not find strong evidence from indirect comparisons that offering more intensive behavioural support was associated with larger treatment effects but this could be because intensive interventions are less likely to be delivered in full.
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My Story: How one Percocet Prescription Triggered my Addiction.

Filed under: Addiction Rehab

J Med Toxicol. 2012 Oct 18;
Doe J

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