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Health Groups Demand 'R' Rating for Movies That Show Smoking

Posted 29 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 29, 2017 – A group of America's leading health organizations is demanding that any movie that depicts smoking or tobacco use come with an "R" rating. The demand is in response to a recent report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that found there has been no progress in reducing the number of tobacco scenes in youth-rated movies. In 2012, the U.S. Surgeon General established a cause-and-effect link between smoking in movies and the likelihood kids would pick up the deadly habit. "As physicians and advocates, we are speaking with a unified voice: Filmmakers must stop enabling the tobacco industry to target our children," Dr. Fernando Stein, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, said in a statement released Tuesday. "The evidence is clear that when children see movie characters smoking, they are more likely to smoke," Stein added. "Ninety ... Read more

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FDA Looks to Reduce Nicotine in Cigarettes

Posted 28 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 28, 2017 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will focus on reducing nicotine levels in cigarettes to make them less addictive, while also making other nicotine products – including patches and gum – safer, agency officials said Friday. In addition, the FDA is delaying implementation of last year's rules on cigars and e-cigarettes currently on the market until 2021 and 2022, respectively. That will allow time to ensure the regulatory standards are appropriate, FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb said at a morning media briefing. "We want to make sure those products, particularly the e-cigarettes, go through an appropriate set of regulatory dates to make sure they're safe, make sure they are meeting standards," he said. Central to the FDA's new approach to tobacco control is the belief that products such as e-cigarettes and cigars should not be used by kids. Rules are ... Read more

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Do Moms Who Smoke in Pregnancy Raise Their Odds for a Troubled Teen?

Posted 11 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 11, 2017 – Expectant mothers have been warned for years to avoid cigarettes. Now researchers report another reason to follow that advice: Teens and young adults whose mothers smoked during pregnancy may be more likely to break the law and be antisocial. The study included thousands of people in New England who were followed from birth into their 30s. The research wasn't designed to prove cause-and-effect. However, kids of women who smoked an extra pack of cigarettes a day had a 30 percent increased risk of three or more symptoms of conduct disorder as a teen, and a more than threefold increased risk of three or more symptoms of antisocial personality disorder as a young adult, the investigators found. These children also had a more than double increased risk of having a record of non-violent offenses as a teen and of committing a violent offense as a young adult, the ... Read more

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Health Tip: Stop Smoking!

Posted 24 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

-- Once you've stopped smoking, it may be a challenge to substitute healthier habits. The American Heart Association suggests: Watch an interesting movie. Find something you can create, make or build. Spruce up your yard by planting flowers. Relax with an afternoon nap. Write emails or letters to friends and family. Reminisce over home movies or photo albums. Read more

Related support groups: Wellbutrin, Bupropion, Smoking, Chantix, Wellbutrin XL, Smoking Cessation, Wellbutrin SR, Nicotine, Zyban, Champix, Nicorette, Nicoderm CQ, Nicotrol Inhaler, Commit, Budeprion, Aplenzin, Varenicline, Habitrol, Zyban Advantage Pack, Buproban

FDA Medwatch Alert: Chantix (varenicline) and Zyban (bupropion): Drug Safety Communication - Mental Health Side Effects Revised

Posted 16 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: Based on an FDA review of a large clinical trial that FDA required the drug companies to conduct, FDA determined the risk of serious side effects on mood, behavior, or thinking with the stop-smoking medicines Chantix (varenicline) and Zyban (bupropion) is lower than previously suspected. The risk of these mental health side effects is still present, especially in those currently being treated for mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety disorders, or schizophrenia, or who have been treated for mental illnesses in the past. However, most people who had these side effects did not have serious consequences such as hospitalization. The results of the trial confirm that the benefits of stopping smoking outweigh the risks of these medicines. See the Drug Safety Communication for a data summary. As a result of the large clinical trial review, FDA is removing the Boxed Warning, FDA’s ... Read more

Related support groups: Bupropion, Smoking, Chantix, Smoking Cessation, Zyban, Varenicline

Most Elderly Smokers Don't Use Anti-Smoking Meds After Heart Attack

Posted 14 Nov 2016 by Drugs.com

SUNDAY, Nov. 13, 2016 – Many elderly smokers who've had a heart attack fail to fill prescriptions for medications designed to help them quit smoking, a new study finds. "These findings come as no surprise for geriatricians and health care professionals who face on a daily basis the challenges of recognizing and managing the complexity of caring for older adults," said Dr. Gisele Wolf-Klein, who reviewed the new findings. She directs geriatric education at Northwell Health in Great Neck, N.Y. She noted that elderly patients face many challenges, such as "multiple medical conditions, which often include depression and forgetfulness." That can make it tough for them to initiate and stick with a quit-smoking regimen such as medications, lozenges or patches, Wolf-Klein said. The new study was led by Dr. Neha Pagidipati of Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C. It was scheduled for ... Read more

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Most Smokers Don't Stick With E-Cigarettes

Posted 31 May 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 31, 2016 – Some smokers turn to e-cigarettes with the hope that the electronic nicotine delivery devices will help them give up regular cigarettes. But new research suggests that for most smokers, e-cigarettes aren't an acceptable alternative. The good news from the study is that e-cigarettes helped at least a small group of smokers quit tobacco cigarettes. Ideally, study lead author Terry Pechacek said, e-cigarettes would be both appealing and less dangerous than traditional cigarettes. "Even if they're only half as risky, there would be a huge public health benefit if we could switch 40 million smokers to them," he said. But the study suggests smokers who've tried them are saying "that's possible but we're not there yet," said Pechacek, professor and interim division director of Health Management and Policy at Georgia State University in Atlanta. For the study, the ... Read more

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No Link Between Anti-Smoking Drugs, Mental Health Issues: Study

Posted 23 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, April 22, 2016 – The anti-smoking drugs Chantix (varenicline) and Wellbutrin (bupropion) don't appear to raise the risk of serious mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts, a new study suggests. "Clinical guidelines recommend that the most effective way to give up smoking is smoking cessation medication and counseling. However, smokers do not use these services enough, in part due to concerns that the medications may not be safe," said lead author Dr. Robert Anthenelli, professor of psychiatry at University of California, San Diego. The new study, published April 22 in The Lancet, should help ease those concerns for patients, the researchers said. The study was requested by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration due to concerns about the safety of the drugs used to help people quit smoking. Funding was provided by drug makers Pfizer (which makes ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress, Wellbutrin, Major Depressive Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Bupropion, Smoking, Contrave, Schizophrenia, Chantix, Wellbutrin XL, Smoking Cessation, Wellbutrin SR, Agitation, Eating Disorder, Nicotine, Psychosis, Agitated State, Dysthymia

No Clear Winner Seen Among Stop-Smoking Aids in Study

Posted 26 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 26, 2016 – If you're trying to quit smoking, using the nicotine patch, the drug Chantix, or a combination of the patch and lozenges all appear to work equally well, researchers report. "To our surprise, all three treatments were essentially identical," said lead author Dr. Michael Fiore, director of the University of Wisconsin Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention in Madison. Results of the three approaches did not differ significantly at either six months or a year, the investigators found. At six months, the quit rate was 23 percent for the patch, 24 percent for Chantix, and 27 percent for the combination of patch and lozenges. At a year, the quit rate was 21 percent, 19 percent and 20 percent, respectively, the findings showed. In the past, Chantix (varenicline) or the combination of the nicotine patch and nicotine lozenges were shown in studies to be more ... Read more

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Anti-Smoking Drug Chantix May Help Women Sooner Than Men

Posted 13 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 13, 2015 – An effective prescription drug used to help people quit smoking initially helps women more than men, new research suggests. The study, from Yale School of Medicine, found that Chantix (varenicline) helped women more than men for the first year of treatment. After a year, however, the anti-smoking medication worked equally well for both men and women. "Studies show that women have a harder time quitting smoking than men, even as quitting has shown greater benefits to women's cardiovascular and respiratory health," Sherry McKee, professor of psychiatry and lead researcher of Yale's Specialized Center of Research, said in a university news release. "With this first comprehensive analysis of sex differences in the effectiveness of this drug, now women and their health care providers can better decide how to successfully quit and live longer, healthier lives," she ... Read more

Related support groups: Smoking, Chantix, Smoking Cessation, Champix, Varenicline

Lung Cancer Patients Who Quit Smoking Live Longer

Posted 16 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 16, 2015 – Lung cancer patients live longer if they quit smoking around the time of their cancer diagnosis, a new study finds. Researchers looked at 250 lung cancer patients who were smokers and were referred to a program to help them stop smoking. Fifty had recently quit smoking, and 71 had quit smoking soon after being referred to the tobacco cessation program. Those who quit smoking shortly before or after they learned they had lung cancer lived an average of 28 months. Those who continued to smoke lived an average of 18 months, the study found. Even patients with advanced lung cancer gained extra survival time if they quit smoking, the study in the July issue of the Journal of Thoracic Oncology showed. The researchers also found that patients who didn't quit smoking but continued their attempts to quit may also live longer. However, death rates for those who quit and ... Read more

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Smoking, Preterm Births Increase a Woman's Heart Disease Risk

Posted 9 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 9, 2015 – Women who smoke and have had a premature baby are at significantly higher risk for heart disease, a new study finds. Researchers examined data from more than 900,000 mothers and found that those who smoked and also had a preterm birth were nearly three-and-a-half times more likely to develop heart disease than nonsmokers who had full-term births. That risk is 29 percent higher than the risk associated with either smoking or preterm birth alone, according to the study published July 9 in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. The risk of heart disease was even higher among mothers who smoked and had multiple or extremely premature births. "Fertility treatment is pushing up rates of preterm birth and smoking in pregnant women remains high, so knowledge of the impact of these conditions on [heart disease] is important for prevention efforts. Our research ... Read more

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As U.S. Smoking Rate Drops, Smokers More Likely to Quit: Study

Posted 25 Jun 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 25, 2015 – As the number of smokers in the United States dwindles, those who still light up are becoming less attached to the habit and more likely to try quitting, a new study has found. These findings run counter to the theory of "hardening," which has held that as smoking rates decline those who still smoke will be increasingly committed to their habit, said study author Margarete Kulik, a postdoctoral fellow with the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California, San Francisco. "The assumption is as smoking prevalence decreases, those smokers who are left will be the hardcore smokers who are unable or unwilling to quit," Kulik said. "We found out that there is not hardening. There is softening. There is actually more quitting, and people smoke less." The study was published online June 24 in the journal Tobacco Control. Dr. Norman ... Read more

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Chantix Study Finds Little Evidence to Support Suicidal, Criminal Warnings

Posted 2 Jun 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 2, 2015 – The quit-smoking drug Chantix (varenicline) doesn't increase the risk of suicidal behavior, mental illness, criminal acts or traffic accidents, European researchers say. A study of more than 69,000 Swedes who used the smoking aid found no evidence for these worries, some of which led the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to place its strongest warning on the drug's label in 2009. "Some of the concerns about the safety of Chantix are not supported by evidence," said lead researcher Dr. Seena Fazel, a senior research fellow in the psychiatry department at the University of Oxford in England. And some concerns may have been overstated, he added. However, among participants with a history of psychiatric problems, the study found a small increased risk of mood changes and anxiety. And several U.S. health experts said they're reluctant to prescribe Chantix because of ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Smoking, Chantix, Smoking Cessation, Dysthymia

Ban Flavoring, Ads for E-Cigarettes, Doctors' Group Says

Posted 22 Apr 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 22, 2015 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration should ban flavorings and television ads for e-cigarettes, a prominent physicians' organization says. There is scant evidence that e-cigarettes help people quit smoking, as claimed by manufacturers. And the chemicals used in these devices may be harmful to both smokers and bystanders, said Ryan Crowley, senior associate for health policy at the American College of Physicians (ACP). "There are over 7,000 different flavorings in e-cigarettes, and the evidence shows that young people are attracted to these products because of the flavors," Crowley said. "There are also concerns that there are harmful chemicals in the flavorings themselves." Crowley added that calling for a ban on TV ads for e-cigarettes follows ACP's continuing policy supporting bans on all tobacco advertising. The organization also recommends taxing ... Read more

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