Smoking cessation interventions for pregnant women to prevent low birth weight: what does the evidence show?

J Am Acad Nurse Pract. 2001 Apr;13(4):171-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1745-7599.2001.tb00243.x.


Purpose: To review the epidemiology of smoking cessation and low birth weight (LBW), the use of meta-analysis and cost-benefit analysis in analyzing this problem, and the financial considerations of institutionalizing smoking cessation interventions. Recommendations for clinicians caring for smoking pregnant women and suggestions for implementing the recommended strategies for smoking cessation programs are included.

Data sources: Comprehensive review of smoking and low birth weight (LBW) outcomes, cost-effectiveness, and tobacco use and dependence literature; clinical practice guidelines, and a widely cited meta-analysis on smoking cessation.

Conclusions: Research has shown that smoking is a significant factor in LBW outcomes and that cessation is especially critical for pregnant women.

Implications for practice: Careful evaluation of the intervention research is required before designing local interventions to ensure the most effective measures are utilized.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Epidemiologic Studies
  • Evidence-Based Medicine*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Low Birth Weight*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Meta-Analysis as Topic
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / prevention & control*
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking / adverse effects*
  • Smoking Cessation*
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / complications
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / therapy