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Addict Behav. 2006 Apr;31(4):641-8. Epub 2005 Jun 27.

A randomised-controlled pilot study using nicotine patches with pregnant women.

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  • 1School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia, and Women's and Babies' Division of the Women's and Children's Hospital, Adelaide SA 5000, Australia.


Stopping smoking in pregnancy is a public health priority and a clinical imperative. However, many women who have not been able to 'quit' in early pregnancy find it very difficult to do so. This randomised-controlled pilot study examined feasibility issues in offering free nicotine patches with counselling to a group of 20 mid-trimester pregnant women at the Women's and Children's Hospital, Adelaide. A further 20 were offered counselling only. Smoking status at each visit was measured by self-report, carbon monoxide monitoring, and salivary cotinine. The most common pattern (eleven of the twenty women) was intermittent patch use. Only five women used patches continuously up to the 12 week maximum available. Three women in the patch group were abstinent at delivery compared with none in the control group. Notable features of the study were the low interest in participation and the high withdrawal rate. Nicotine patches may not be highly useful for pregnant women. Continuing tobacco control measures and customized support for women and their partners, often smokers, may prove more fruitful.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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