eLetters

89 e-Letters

published between 2010 and 2013

  • Free NRT by mail an intent-to-treat defeat
    John R. Polito

    Zawertailo, Selby and colleagues conclusion that free replacement nicotine (NRT) by mail is effective is deeply disturbing.[1] While the study's free abstract portrays free NRT by mail as a resounding success (21.4% smoking cessation at 6 months versus 11.6% for no-intervention), it neglects mention that under intent-to-treat analysis that there was zero benefit over no-intervention (an average of 8.7 percent 30-day poi...

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  • Response to Thomson et al.
    Michael S. Givel
    NOT PEER REVIEWED I note this article in Tobacco Control quotes my two recent articles on the Bhutanese endgame. However, the Tobacco Control article to a certain degree does not catch the spirit of what is going on in Bhutan and what I concluded in my publications. Importation of small amounts of tobacco for personal consumption is legal. Sales are not--they are banned nationwide. Nevertheless, there is a major tobacco black mark...
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  • What are U.S. health officials smoking?
    John R. Polito

    NOT PEER REVIEWED Zhu and colleagues' population level findings contribute to a growing body of external real-world evidence supporting the conclusion that the quitting product marketing industry's "double your chances" mantra is false and deceptive, and that smoker reliance upon it is likely responsible for a host of negative consequences, including failure to quit and premature demise.[1]

    Their review of twenty years...

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  • Authors' Response
    Hillel R. Alpert

    The volume of attention to our study in the U.S. and international press is not surprising, considering the widespread promotion of nicotine replacement products to all smokers in the population, and their growing inclusion in government subsidized health plans. Prior to addressing criticisms made by Stapleton and others, we note that their comments reflect at least one important area of agreement. The fact that no adva...

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  • Throwing the baby out with the bath water
    Alain Braillon

    Throwing the baby out with the bath water

    Alain Braillon(a) MD, PhD, Gerard Dubois(b) MD, MPH.

    (a) 27 rue Voiture. 80000 Amiens. France (b) Public Health. Amiens University Hospital. France

    In an observational study Alpert and colleagues concluded that persons who have quit smoking relapsed at equivalent rates, whether or not they used nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) to help them in their qu...

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  • Misreporting of results: Correction of Alpert et al 2012
    Dr Emma V Beard

    In their paper claiming to find that NRT is not effective long-term, Alpert et al [1] misrepresented findings from a paper for which I was primary author [2], citing it as evidence that other representative population studies have not found any beneficial effect of the use of NRT on annual smoking cessation rates. They state 'Beard et al found increased short-term abstinence only (sic) among persons who had reported using...

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  • Online trade of Snus as well as Gutkha (Indian variety of smokeless tobacco-ST) should be banned. WHO FCTC must have a special focus on this deadly threat of oral cancer to millions.
    Chitta R CHOUDHURY, Prof

    Professor Chitta Choudhury Director, International Centre for Tropical Oral Health, UK

    Nitte University Dept of Oral Biology Genomic Studies | Cen Oral Dis Prev Control, Mangalore, India.

    NOT PEER REVIEWED I refer to the report "How online sales and promotion of snus contravenes current European Union legislation, published recently in Tob Control 21 January 2012. Like Snus, the online trade of Gutkh...

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  • Perverse conclusion from results
    John A. Stapleton

    The results of the recent study by Alpert et al. were interpreted incorrectly with respect to the efficacy of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT).(1) The study only considered relative relapse rates among people who had already stopped smoking according to whether they had used NRT or not. This is clearly an inadequate design to address the issue of efficacy because it ignores the initial quit rates in the two groups. Only...

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  • Placebo was never a real-world quitting method
    John R. Polito

    Many of Alpert, Connolly and Biener's population level NRT post- cessation findings are disturbing and worthy of further and deeper review. What's most baffling is that any government would invest so much confidence and so many lives in a product without demanding a shred of population level evidence as to its worth.

    According to this paper, the odds of relapse for a heavily dependent NRT quitter who had quit le...

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  • Is it Population control or tobacco
    Mathew Jose

    Attending the RCP annual conference in 1999 in London, I remember a delegate suggesting during a discussion on tobacco control that providing cheap tobacco could be one way for China to control its population. Though the suggestion was generally felt to be in poor taste, I am shell shocked to read the conclusions of this article !

    Conflict of Interest:

    None declared

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