The effectiveness of pharmacologic therapy for smoking cessation in adolescent smokers was evaluated.
In this meta-analysis, the medical literature was searched for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) investigating the effect of pharmacologic therapy for smoking cessation in smokers age 20 years or younger. The overall effect of pharmacologic therapy was based on the longest follow-up data available in each study. The effects of pharmacologic therapy by follow-up period, type of pharmacologic therapy, and type of strategy analysis were also compared among RCTs. Secondary outcome measures were adverse events reported from each study.
Six RCTs involving 816 smokers age 12-20 years were included in the final analysis. No significant increase in abstinence rates was detected with pharmacologic therapy (relative risk [RR], 1.38; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.92-2.07; I(2) = 0.0%) in a fixed-effects meta-analysis. Similarly, no significant increase in abstinence rates was found in subgroup meta-analyses of studies with both short-term (<= 12 weeks) (RR, 1.23; 95% CI, 0.92-1.65) and mid-term (26 weeks) follow-up periods (RR, 1.60; 95% CI, 0.90-2.82). Although few serious adverse events were reported, there was no evidence directly linking these effects to the pharmacologic therapy used.
A meta-analysis found that pharmacologic therapy for smoking cessation among adolescent smokers did not have a significant
effect on abstinence rates at short-term and mid-term follow-up times of <26 weeks, and the RCTs examined found few adverse events. However, the results may have been affected by the limited number of participants in published trials.
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