Canary in a Coal Mine? Interest in Bupropion SR Use Among Smokers in the COMPASS Trial


McClure, J., Jack, L., Deprey, M., Catz, S., McAfee, T., Zbikowski, S., … Swan, G. (2008). Canary in a coal mine? Interest in bupropion SR use among smokers in the COMPASS trial. Nicotine and Tobacco Research, 10(12), 1815-1816.


Current best-practice treatment dictates that all smokers receive a combination of pharmacotherapy and supportive behavior therapy (Fiore, M.C., Baileey, W.C., Cohen, S.J., Dorfman, S.F., et al. , 2000; World Health Organization [WHO], 2003). Until mid-2006, only two medication were approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for this purpose in the United States – nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) and bupropion SR (Zyban). In 2006, varenicline (Chantix or Champion, depending on the market) received approval from the FDA and the European Commission.

The range of available pharmacological treatment options for smoking cessation is narrow compared to treatments for many common chronic health conditions, but our recent experience recruiting for a randomized clinical trial offering bupropion SR suggests  that the range of options many smokers are willing to consider may be even more restricted. In this letter, we share our experience recruiting smokers to three clinical cessation trials, each offering concomitant pharmacotherapy. 

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