Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Clin Psychol Rev. 2006 Mar;26(2):196-215. Epub 2005 Dec 13.

Relapse to smoking.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychological Sciences, 210 McAlester Hall, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, MO 65211, USA.


Relapse is by far the most likely outcome of any smoking cessation attempt, even those made with the benefit intensive psychosocial treatment and pharmacotherapy. The present article briefly reviews the epidemiology of smoking and self-quitting, the outcome data for major forms of behavioral and pharmacologic smoking cessation treatments, and what is known about the natural history of relapse and recovery among treated smokers. A recent trend in smoking relapse research has been to study the dynamics of key motivational processes, such as withdrawal symptoms, negative affect, and craving, in the laboratory and in smokers' natural environments. This literature is also briefly reviewed, with an emphasis on how such investigations may reveal the limitations of current cessation treatments. Finally, three significant research themes that are likely to be important in future relapse research are highlighted--the possible "hardening" of the smoking population, the potential for developmental research to deepen our understanding of smoking motivation, and the promise of molecular genetic studies for advancing treatment and our understanding of relapse.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk