Doctors urged to give smokers more support

April 8, 2009 Two new studies find, to truly help people quit smoking, doctors need to treat the habit as a chronic disease that might require repeated or intensive interventions. That includes tools such as nicotine patches, drugs and counseling.

One study found smokers who were prescribed drugs or patches and received high-intensity counseling had the highest quit rate.

A second study found 35 percent of smokers in a combination therapy group that included pharmaceuticals and counseling had quit smoking compared with 19 percent of those only using a nicotine patch.

Both studies appear in the Annals of Internal Medicine, and authors say, they show the importance of taking a disease management approach to smoking.

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