Whether smokers with a past history of alcohol problems are less able to stop smoking and have a greater need for nicotine replacement therapy than smokers without this history is unclear. We conducted a secondary analysis of a prior study (Nicotine Tobacco Res. 1:169) of 1039 smokers randomized to 0, 21, 35 or 42 mg/day nicotine patch for smoking cessation. Because higher dose patches were being tested, only smokers of ≥30 cigs/day were included. Although smokers with current alcohol abuse or dependence were excluded, 15% of the smokers had a past (>1 year ago) Short Alcohol Dependence Data (SADD) score of ≥9 suggesting past alcohol problems. Heavy smokers with a past history of alcohol problems did not relapse sooner, were not less likely to be abstinent and did not benefit more from nicotine treatment or from higher doses than heavy smokers without this history. We conclude that a past history of alcohol problems per se does not predict inability to stop smoking.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The study was funded by ALZA and Hoechst Marion Roussel. The analysis was funded by NIAAA grant 09430 and NIDA Senior Scientist Award 00490 to J.H.
- Tobacco use cessation
- Tobacco use disorder