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J Fam Pract. 1990 Dec;31(6):625-9.

The impact of physicians' brief smoking cessation counseling: a MIRNET study.

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1
Department of Family Medicine, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan.

Abstract

Although many family physicians may discuss smoking cessation with their patients, few do so consistently. A common belief among many physicians is that such efforts will not deter their patients from smoking. Others believe the time commitment required for a successful intervention is excessive. The present study addressed the above issues by examining the effect of a 3- to 5-minute unstructured physician discussion encouraging smoking cessation with family practice patients. Cigarette-smoking patients of two busy family practices in southeast Michigan were randomly assigned to either a control group receiving routine care or an intervention group receiving, in addition to routine care, smoking cessation counseling from their physician. A third comparison group was drawn from smokers in practices not involved in delivering the intervention. Two hundred thirty-eight patients from the intervention group, 178 from the control group, and 47 from the comparison group were followed up with a telephone interview at 6 months. Intervention group patients made significantly more quit attempts than did those in the control group (P less than .001), which was similar to the comparison group. At the 6-month follow-up, 8% of intervention group members, and 4% of both the comparison and control groups reportedly were abstinent from smoking. Among those contacted at the 1-year follow-up, the respective percentages abstinent were 8%, 3%, and 4%. Although these differences in quit rates were not statistically significant, the findings suggest that physicians can positively affect patient smoking cessation. This intervention was feasible in busy family practices, highlighting its generalizability and applicability to other family practice settings in the United States.

PMID:
2246637
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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