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Overview: Treatment of Tobacco Dependence

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The full newsletter Treatment of Tobacco Dependence, prescribing information and CME self-assessment are free for both AMA members and non-members.

Tobacco dependence is a chronic disease that often requires repeated intervention and multiple attempts to quit. Effective treatments exist, however, that can significantly increase rates of long-term abstinence. While there has been a dramatic decline in tobacco use prevalence over the past 5 decades, this decline has unfortunately stalled in the recent years. The latest Surgeon General’s Report states that there is no safe level of tobacco smoke exposure, indicating that the best strategy is abstinence from tobacco use. Patients need to be assessed regarding their readiness to quit smoking as this is an important guide to tailoring effective interventions.

Numerous effective medications are available for tobacco dependence, and clinicians should encourage their use by all patients attempting to quit smoking—except when medically contraindicated or with specific populations for which there is insufficient evidence of effectiveness (i.e., pregnant women, smokeless tobacco users, light smokers, and adolescents).

After reviewing " Treatment of Tobacco Dependences" physicians will be able to:

  • Describe approaches to determining the level of tobacco dependence and assessment of the patient’s readiness to attempt smoking cessation.
  • Utilize pharmacologic treatment approaches for smoking cessation that are evidence based.
  • The full newsletter will provide you further insights into the use of currently available drugs (i.e., nicotine replacement drugs, varenicline, and bupropion) used in smoking cessation therapy.

    View the full newsletter Treatment of Tobacco Dependence and learn how to receive CME credit.

    Newsletters are available to all physicians, not just AMA members.