October 14th 2019

A study posted in JAMA Pediatrics evaluated the efficacy and safety of varenicline tartrate for smoking cessation in adolescents and young adults. Compared with the placebo, varenicline tartrate was well-tolerated, but did not improve end-of-treatment abstinence.

A study posted inJAMA Pediatricsevaluated the efficacy and safety of varenicline tartrate for smoking cessation in adolescents and young adults. Compared with the placebo, varenicline tartrate was well-tolerated, but did not improve end-of-treatment abstinence.

Two groups were randomized in a double-blind, intention-to-treat clinical trial at an outpatient clinical site in Charleston, South Carolina. From August 15, 2012 to October 20, 2017, 157 adolescent and young adult cigarette smokers were randomized in a 1:1 ratio to a 12-week course of varenicline or placebo. All participants also received weekly smoking cessation counseling.

The primary efficacy outcome was urine cotinine level-confirmed 7-day abstinence at the end of treatment. Secondary efficacy outcomes included weekly abstinence throughout active treatment, abstinence at post-treatment follow-up visits, and time to first 7-day abstinence.

The results showed that both the varenicline and placebo groups did not differ in the primary outcome of cotinine-confirmed self-reported 7-day abstinence at the end of treatment. Among secondary outcomes, the varenicline group achieved self-reported earlier abstinence of at least 7 days and demonstrated higher rates of self-reported weekly abstinence during the full course of treatment.

The researchers concluded that varenicline may accelerate abstinence and yield improvements in post-treatment abstinence outcomes.

Reference

Gray KM, Baker NL, McClure EA, et al. Efficacy and safety of varenicline for adolescent smoking cessation: a randomized clinical trial.JAMA Pediatrics. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2019.3553.

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