CNS Drugs

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 281–291 | Cite as

Tailoring Nicotine Replacement Therapy

Rationale and Potential Approaches
Leading Article


Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) is an effective treatment for smoking cessation, but as with all such pharmacotherapies, the majority of smokers who use NRT products do not stop smoking or remain abstinent long term. Treatment outcome is affected by a range of individual-specific factors, as well as the pharmacokinetic profile of each NRT formulation. This has led to speculation that abstinence rates could be improved if NRT treatments were individually tailored to best match each individual’s needs and preferences. There are also populations for whom special product and dosage considerations are warranted to maximise treatment safety.

This paper reviews the rationale for NRT treatment, standard dose recommendations and recommendations for how to best match NRT treatment to the specific needs of individual smokers. We also review emerging evidence that genetic profiling may one day be a useful consideration for tailoring NRT treatment.



This work was supported by funding from the National Cancer Institute (2 R01 CA71358, Gary Swan, PI and R01 CA100341, Jennifer McClure, PI). The authors wish to thank Lisa Jack MA for her assistance with the preparation of this manuscript. The authors have no potential conflicts of interest directly relevant to the contents of this review.


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© Adis Data Information BV 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Health StudiesGroup Health CooperativeSeattleUSA
  2. 2.SRI InternationalCenter for Health SciencesSeattleUSA

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