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Medication may help patients with severe mental illness stay smoke-free

Science Spotlight

February 04, 2014

Smokers with schizophrenia or bipolar disorders are three times more likely to abstain from smoking over the course of a year if they take varenicline.

Although varenicline is an FDA-approved smoking cessation medication, it had not been proven effective for smokers with severe mental illness. The results of this study suggest that it is feasible to prescribe varenicline to these patients, which could lessen the health burdens caused by smoking in this population.

For a copy of the study abstract (published online January 8), go to: http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1812963. For facts on drug abuse in patients with have mental illness, go to www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/comorbidity-addiction-other-mental-disorders.

For more information, contact the NIDA press office at media@nida.nih.gov or 301-443-6245.

Picture of a health lung and a tobacco smokers blackened lung

NIDA Press Office

About the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA): The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is a component of the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIDA supports most of the world’s research on the health aspects of drug use and addiction. The Institute carries out a large variety of programs to inform policy, improve practice, and advance addiction science. Fact sheets on the health effects of drugs and information on NIDA research and other activities can be found at www.drugabuse.gov, which is now compatible with your smartphone, iPad or tablet. To order publications in English or Spanish, call NIDA’s DrugPubs research dissemination center at 1-877-NIDA-NIH or 240-645-0228 (TDD) or email requests to drugpubs@nida.nih.gov. Online ordering is available at drugpubs.drugabuse.gov. NIDA’s media guide can be found at www.drugabuse.gov/publications/media-guide/dear-journalist, and its easy-to-read website can be found at www.easyread.drugabuse.gov. You can follow NIDA on Twitter and Facebook.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation’s medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

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    NIDA. (2014, February 4). Medication may help patients with severe mental illness stay smoke-free. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/news-events/news-releases/2014/02/medication-may-help-patients-severe-mental-illness-stay-smoke-free

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