Timing and risk factors associated with relapse among smokers attempting to quit in Malaysia

Int J Tuberc Lung Dis. 2012 Jul;16(7):980-5. Epub 2012 Apr 9.

Author

Yasin SM, Moy FM, Retneswari M, Isahak M, Koh D.

Institution

Faculty of Medicine, Population Health and Preventive Medicine, Mara University of Technology, Sungai Buloh, Selangor, Malaysia; Centre for Occupational and Environmental Health, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Many smokers attempt to quit smoking, but very few succeed.

OBJECTIVE: To identify the timing and risk factors involved in smoking relapse.

METHODS: We conducted a prospective cohort study among staff in two public universities in Malaysia. Behavioural therapy with free nicotine replacement therapy was given as treatment. Participants were followed up for 6 months. Relapse was defined as returning to smoking after having quit for at least 24 h.

RESULTS: Of 185 smokers who volunteered to participate, 120 achieved at least 24-h abstinence, and 80% of these relapsed within 2 months. Compared to participants who attended a single smoking cessation session, participants who attended three sessions had a lower likelihood of relapse within 6 months of quitting. In contrast, smokers with a much longer exposure to cigarette smoking in the workplace (>3 h per week) had a greater chance of relapse compared to those with no exposure.

CONCLUSIONS: Frequent attendance at clinic sessions and less exposure to other people smoking in the workplace can potentially reduce the likelihood of relapse among smokers who have recently quit.


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