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The Pediatric Forum
March 2001

Promoting Adolescent Smoking Cessation Is Worth the Effort

Author Affiliations

Not Available

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2001;155(3):419-420. doi:10.1001/archpedi.155.3.417

We read with great interest the article by Hurt et al titled "Nicotine Patch Therapy in 101 Adolescent Smokers," published in the January 2000 issue of the ARCHIVES.1 Their article is an important contribution to the field of adolescent smoking cessation—a field that is still in its infancy. We recently did a MEDLINE query examining the number of studies offering treatment options to physicians for adolescent smoking cessation compared with those for illnesses and disease processes that affect proportionately fewer persons. Although an estimated 1 million adolescents begin smoking annually, and although cigarette smoking continues to be the largest cause of preventable illness and death in the United States, the number of studies dedicated to smoking cessation interventions was woefully small.2-4 Research on muscular dystrophy and cystic fibrosis—severe but certainly less prevalent health problems—outnumbered smoking cessation research by greater than 25 to 1 and 10 to 1, respectively.