The efficacy of computer-tailored smoking cessation material as a supplement to nicotine polacrilex gum therapy

Arch Intern Med. 2000 Jun 12;160(11):1675-81. doi: 10.1001/archinte.160.11.1675.


Background: Standard, generic self-help materials have been largely ineffective as behavioral treatments for smoking cessation. In contrast, self-help programs tailored to the needs of specific smokers have shown promise in facilitating quitting.

Objective: To evaluate the incremental efficacy of the Committed Quitters Program (CQP), a set of computer-tailored materials offered to purchasers of nicotine polacrilex gum, compared with a briefuntailored user's guide and audiotape, both as supplements to nicotine replacement therapy.

Methods: We conducted a randomized, open-label trial with 3 parallel arms. Subjects were smokers who purchased 2- or 4-mg nicotine polacrilex gum and called the CQP toll-free enrollment line. Three thousand six hundred twenty-seven subjects consented to participate in 1 of 3 study arms: (1) those receiving the CQP materials (CQP group, n= 1,217), (2) those receiving CQP materials and an outbound telephone call (CQP + C group, n= 1,207); and (3) those receiving no supplemental intervention beyond the user's guide and audiotape that were prepackaged with the nicotine polacrilex gum (UG group, n= 1,203). Twenty-eight-day continuous abstinence rates were assessed by telephone interviews at 6 weeks and 10-week continuous rates at 12 weeks into treatment.

Results: Abstinence rates among respondents at the 6- and 12-week assessments were significantly higher for the CQP (36.2% and 27.6%) and CQP + C (35.5% and 27.3%) groups compared with the UG group (24.7% and 17.7%) at both intervals. The quit rates for the CQP and CQP + C groups were almost identical.

Conclusions: The CQP proved to be an effective behavioral treatment, enhancing quit rates over and above nicotine replacement therapy and a brief untailored written guide and audiotape.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Behavior Therapy / methods
  • Behavior Therapy / statistics & numerical data
  • Chewing Gum*
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic / methods
  • Middle Aged
  • Nicotine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Nicotine / therapeutic use
  • Patient Dropouts
  • Polymethacrylic Acids / therapeutic use*
  • Polyvinyls / therapeutic use*
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Smoking Cessation / statistics & numerical data
  • Telephone
  • Therapy, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Therapy, Computer-Assisted / statistics & numerical data
  • Time Factors
  • Tobacco Use Cessation Devices


  • Chewing Gum
  • Polymethacrylic Acids
  • Polyvinyls
  • Nicotine