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E-Cigarettes May Be Better Than Nicotine Gum for Quitting Smoking

2/14/24 People who used electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, to help them stop smoking were more likely to have quit combustible cigarettes at 6 months than those who used nicotine chewing gum. But the majority of the e-cigarettes group was still vaping at 6 months, while the groups using the 2 other smoking cessation methods—nicotine chewing gum and varenicline, a medication marketed as Chantix—were no longer using those tools.

The study published in JAMA Internal Medicine involved about 1100 participants in China who had smoked at least half a pack of cigarettes daily for the past 5 years. Everyone received their assigned cessation method for 3 months, along with a small amount of behavioral support through an internet-based messaging app.

At the end of the 6-month study, about 16% of people using e-cigarettes had stopped smoking compared with about 9% of those in the group using nicotine chewing gum. There was no statistical difference in 6-month quit rates among those using e-cigarettes compared with those taking varenicline.

Although switching to e-cigarettes might be helpful for particular people with a history of smoking, the researchers questioned whether this was a “a positive or negative outcome” since long-term use of e-cigarettes causes its own health problems.

You can view here the randomized clinical trial data mentioned above which was published January 29,2024.

Article Information

Published Online: February 14, 2024. doi:10.1001/jama.2024.0351

Emily Harris

JAMA. Published online February 14, 2024. doi:10.1001/jama.2024.0351



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