A systematic review of smoking cessation interventions among patients with tuberculosis
Public Health Action
Authors:Whitehouse, E., Lai, J., Golub, J., & Farley, J. E
Smoking is a significant risk factor for morbidity and mortality, particularly among patients with tuberculosis (TB). Although smoking cessation is recommended by the World Health Organization and the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, there has been no published evaluation of smoking cessation interventions among people with TB. The purpose of this review was to synthesize the evidence on interventions and suggest practice, research and policy implications. A systematic review of the literature identified 14 peer-reviewed studies describing 13 smoking cessation interventions between 2007 and 2017. There were five randomized controlled trials, three non-randomized interventions, and five prospective cohort studies. The primary types of interventions were brief advice (n = 9), behavioral counseling (n = 4), medication (n = 3), and community-based care (n = 3). A variety of health care workers (HCWs) implemented interventions, from physicians, nurses, clinic staff, community health workers (CHWs), as did family members. There was significant heterogeneity of design, definition of smoking and smoking abstinence, and implementation, making comparison across studies difficult. Although all smoking interventions increased smoking cessation between 15% and 82%, many studies had a high risk for bias, including six without a control group. The implementing personnel did not make a large difference in cessation results, suggesting that national TB programs may customize according to their needs and limitations. Family members may be important supporters/advocates for cessation. Future research should standardize definitions of smoking and cessation to allow comparisons across studies. Policy makers should encourage collaboration between tobacco and TB initiatives and develop smoking cessation measures to maximize results in low-resource settings.