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Randomized Controlled Trial
. 2011 Dec 1;119(1-2):72-80.
doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2011.05.027. Epub 2011 Jul 1.

Mindfulness Training for Smoking Cessation: Results From a Randomized Controlled Trial

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Randomized Controlled Trial

Mindfulness Training for Smoking Cessation: Results From a Randomized Controlled Trial

Judson A Brewer et al. Drug Alcohol Depend. .
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Background: Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the world, and long-term abstinence rates remain modest. Mindfulness training (MT) has begun to show benefits in a number of psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety and more recently, in addictions. However, MT has not been evaluated for smoking cessation through randomized clinical trials.

Methods: 88 treatment-seeking, nicotine-dependent adults who were smoking an average of 20cigarettes/day were randomly assigned to receive MT or the American Lung Association's freedom from smoking (FFS) treatment. Both treatments were delivered twice weekly over 4 weeks (eight sessions total) in a group format. The primary outcomes were expired-air carbon monoxide-confirmed 7-day point prevalence abstinence and number of cigarettes/day at the end of the 4-week treatment and at a follow-up interview at week 17.

Results: 88% of individuals received MT and 84% of individuals received FFS completed treatment. Compared to those randomized to the FFS intervention, individuals who received MT showed a greater rate of reduction in cigarette use during treatment and maintained these gains during follow-up (F=11.11, p=.001). They also exhibited a trend toward greater point prevalence abstinence rate at the end of treatment (36% vs. 15%, p=.063), which was significant at the 17-week follow-up (31% vs. 6%, p=.012).

Conclusions: This initial trial of mindfulness training may confer benefits greater than those associated with current standard treatments for smoking cessation.


Figure 1
Figure 1. CONSORT diagram
Figure 2
Figure 2. Individuals receiving Mindfulness Training reduce cigarette smoking more than those receiving Freedom From Smoking
Mixed effect regression model estimates of cigarette smoking in Mindfulness Training (MT, n=33) and Freedom From Smoking (FFS, n=38) during the week before treatment initiation and the four weeks of treatment (F=11.11, df=1,1082, p=.001).
Figure 3
Figure 3. Individuals receiving Mindfulness Training achieve greater point prevalence abstinence rates than those receiving Freedom From Smoking
One-week point prevalence abstinence rates for Mindfulness Training (MT) and Freedom From Smoking (FFS) at the end of treatment (χ2=3.45, df=1, p = .063) and 17-week follow-up (χ2=6.32, df=1, p=.012), n=33 in MT and n=38 in FFS.

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