Study objectives: Smoking cessation for current smokers is a health-care imperative. It is not clear which approaches to smoking cessation are the most effective in the hospital setting and which factors predict long-term abstinence. We hypothesized that a hospital-based smoking cessation program involving behavioral modification and support would provide an effective intervention for smoking cessation.
Design: Prospective cohort study.
Setting: Smoking cessation clinics in a tertiary referral, cardiothoracic hospital.
Patients or participants: Two hundred forty-three smokers and 187 never-smoker control subjects.
Interventions: Smokers underwent specific sessions of individual counseling on behavioral modification, including written information, advice about quit aids, and support during the quit attempt. Abstinence was confirmed by exhaled carbon monoxide measurements.
Measurements and results: Compared to never-smoker control subjects, smokers were more likely to have grown up with a smoking father or siblings, and to currently live or socialize with other smokers. Two hundred sixteen smokers attended at least two sessions of the smoking cessation program. Of these, 25% were unavailable for follow-up at 12 months and were assumed to be smoking. The point prevalence abstinence rate at 12 months was 32%. Independent factors associated with abstinence at 12 months were self-belief in quitting ability, having a heart condition, growing up without siblings who smoked, and increasing number of pack-years.
Conclusions: This prospective study has demonstrated that this hospital-based smoking cessation program was as effective as programs in other settings. Social and psychological factors were associated with a greater chance of abstinence.