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Review: self help interventions for smoking cessation are not effective unless tailored to the individual

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 Q Are self help interventions for smoking cessation more effective than no treatment? Does the addition of self help materials to other interventions (eg, nicotine replacement therapy [NRT]) improve efficacy? Are individually tailored self help programmes more effective than standard self help materials?

Clinical impact ratings GP/FP/Primary care ★★★★★★☆


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Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Review Group specialised register and reference lists of previous reviews and meta-analyses on the topic.

Embedded ImageStudy selection and assessment:

randomised controlled trials (RCTs) (including quasi-randomised trials) of smoking cessation interventions in non-pregnant adults with ⩾6 months follow up, in which ⩾1 group consisted of a self help intervention. The self help intervention had to be a structured written, audio, video, or computer program used to assist a quit attempt without involving intensive contact with a health professional, therapist, or group support. Exclusion criteria: repeated brief advice, proactive telephone …

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  • For correspondence: Dr T Lancaster, Oxford University, Oxford, UK.{at}

  • Source of funding: NHS Research & Development Programme UK.

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