Introduction: Smoking cessation should be part of tuberculosis (TB) treatment, but a cessation service is not available as part of a routine TB service in most low- and middle-income countries. WHO and The International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (The Union) issued a guideline and China implemented a pilot project 5 years ago. This study aimed to determine changes in smoking status among TB patients at 5 years after completion of anti-TB treatment to observe long-term outcome of a smoking cessation project whose baseline characteristics were associated with a relapse of smoking behavior.
Methods: A prospective longitudinal study was conducted 5 years after completion of anti-TB treatment to assess changes in patient smoking status against individual baseline data that were entered into a database at the time of TB registration. The patients were tracked by trained village doctors and validated by township health staff. Their smoking status was assessed and entered into the database and analysed.
Results: Of the 800 TB patients registered at baseline, 650 (81.2%) were tracked. Ninety-one (11.4%) patients died and 59 (7.4%) were lost to follow-up. The rates of remaining non-smoking after 5 years were 82.0%, 63.0%, 49.6%, 43.5% and 30.0%, respectively for non-smokers, ex-smokers, current smokers who received cessation intervention, recent quitters, and current smokers not on a cessation intervention. The odds of smoking relapse were significantly higher for those aged ≥65 years (p=0.003) and registered in Xingguo County (p=0.025).
Conclusions: Findings from this study confirmed that non-smokers, ex-smokers and current smokers who received cessation intervention at baseline maintained higher non-smoking rates compared with those who did not receive the intervention. To prevent relapse, intensive cessation support should be given to TB patients aged ≥65 years. TB programme managers need to ensure integration and provision of smoking cessation advice and smoke-free policy in routine TB services.
Keywords: China; long-term outcome; smoking cessation; tuberculosis.
© 2019 Lin Y.