Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Review: bupropion and nortriptyline each increase smoking cessation rates

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.

 Q Do antidepressants increase long-term abstinence from smoking?

Clinical impact ratings GP/FP/Primary care ★★★★★★☆ IM/Ambulatory care ★★★★★☆☆ Respirology ★★★★★★☆


Embedded ImageData sources:

Drug names found in the Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Group’s specialized register, reference lists, recent reviews, and meeting abstracts were searched in PubMed and EMBASE/Excerpta Medica (March 2004). Investigators were contacted as needed.

Embedded ImageStudy selection and assessment:

randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that compared any antidepressant with placebo or another treatment and assessed smoking abstinence at ⩾6 months. Studies were pooled using fixed effects.

Embedded ImageOutcomes:

smoking abstinence at ⩾6 months.


36 RCTs met the selection criteria. Tricyclic antidepressants. Nortriptyline increased smoking cessation; when added to nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), nortriptyline did not increase abstinence rates more than NRT alone (see table at Monoamine oxidase inhibitors. Moclobemide did not show a statistically significant difference in abstinence at 12 months (see table at …

View Full Text


  • For correspondence: Professor J Hughes, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT, USA.

  • Sources of funding: National Institute on Drug Abuse and NHS Research and Development Programme.