Preventing relapse among former smokers: a comparison of minimal interventions through telephone and mail

J Consult Clin Psychol. 2000 Feb;68(1):103-13. doi: 10.1037//0022-006x.68.1.103.


This study compared 2 minimal interventions for reducing relapse in ex-smokers. One intervention involved 12-month access to a telephone hot line. In the other intervention, 8 relapse-prevention booklets were mailed to participants over 1 year. The 2 interventions were crossed in a 2 x 2 factorial design, yielding control, hot-line-only, mailings-only, and combined conditions. The criterion of at least 1 week of abstinence at baseline was met by 584 participants, 446 of whom also completed a 12-month assessment. Repeated mailings, but not the hot line, reduced relapse for those participants who had been abstinent for less than 3 months at baseline. At follow-up, 12% of those in the mailings conditions were smoking again compared with 35% in the nonmailing conditions. As predicted, both interventions were effective at attenuating the association between depressive symptoms and poor outcome found in the control condition.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hotlines*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation*
  • Pamphlets*
  • Recurrence
  • Reinforcement Schedule
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome