This stop smoking medication was approved by the FDA in August 2006 and was approved for sale in Europe shortly thereafter.
The normal FDA review period of 10 months was shortened to six months for Chantix, allowing the drug to be placed on the market more quickly.
According to the FDA’s press release, the stop smoking pill received a “priority review” because of its “significant potential benefit to public health”.
The fact is that Chantix, although it is considered a “unique” compound, derives chemically from cytisine, which has been used as a “stop smoking medication” for over 40 years in Eastern Europe.
Cytisine is a toxic compound that acts very similar to nicotine.
After analyzing accumulated data involving thousands of smokers, researchers at the University of Geneva concluded that “Cytisine may be effective for smoking cessation.” Coincidentally, the Geneva review was released in August of 2006.
Advertising for this “new” stop smoking pill claims that Chantix is more effective than Zyban, the name given to the anti-depressant Welbutrin, when it is prescribed as a stop smoking medication.
The fact is that Chantix was only slightly more effective than Zyban in only two of the five independent studies that were completed and patients in the study also received daily counseling.
Over the years, several different anti-depressants have been prescribed as a stop smoking medication. Nicotine replacement therapy, gums, patches, lozenges and nasal spray are commonly used. The gums and patches are sold over the counter in the United States.
Overall, studies have shown that about 80% of all smokers will return to smoking within the first year, regardless of the therapy they chose to use.
In April 2007, Pfizer research and development published a study concluding that people could safely take the new stop smoking pill for 52 weeks or one year. The FDA has only approved Chantix for 12 weeks of use, followed by an additional 12 weeks if the person has stopped smoking.
The knowledge that most people return to smoking in the first year may have prompted the Pfizer study, but the results do not indicate that the new stop smoking medication is any more effective than other drugs, including nicotine replacement. Only 53.8% of the smokers completed the study. Of those who did, only 36.7% had not returned to smoking.
In other words, of the 251 smokers who began the study, only 49 completed the study and were still not smoking after one year. Those numbers indicate that Chantix is only effective 19% of the time. Placebo (inactive substances) when combined with a support program is effective 14% of the time.
In fact, in a new study published in June 2007, researchers concluded that counseling is just as effective as any stop smoking medication currently on the market.
The researchers went on to say that counseling is the “sole approach without any adverse effects”. Negative side effects of the new stop smoking pill are similar to those of nicotine replacement, including nausea, headache, vomiting, insomnia and abnormal dreams, with the added side effect of altering one’s sense of taste.
A new drug free, nicotine free system with no adverse side effects reports a 90% success rate. To learn more please visit http://www.stop-smoking-blog.com.
Article by Patsy Hamilton
About the Author : Patsy Hamilton was a health care professional for over twenty years before becoming a health writer. Currently she is writing a series of articles about how to quit smoking. Read more at http://www.stop-smoking-blog.com.
- Easy Way To Stop Smoking With The Easy Quit System (healthylifestyleplus.com)
- Fantastic Stop Smoking Programs (healthylifestyleplus.com)
- Stop-smoking drug tested despite adverse effects (philly.com)
- Find Help to Stop Smoking Before It’s Too Late (healthylifestyleplus.com)
- The 3 Best Reasons to Stop Smoking (healthylifestyleplus.com)
- Stopping Smoking – help (biosil.wordpress.com)
- Anti-smoking PSAs offer tips on life with a tracheotomy (news.yahoo.com)
Category: Healthy Body