Nicotine patches don’t help pregnant women quit smoking according to a new study published on the BMJ website.
The study had 402 women ranging from 12 to 20 weeks pregnant. Taking place in France, the women, who averaged at least five cigarettes a day, were randomly selected to use 16 hours nicotine patches until giving birth to their child or were given placebo patches. All women were assessed on their progress monthly.
At the end of the study, researchers found that only 5.5 percent of the women were able to give up smoking completely who were on the nicotine patches. Around 5.1 percent of the women on the placebo patches were able to quit smoking.
The study concluded that the women on the nicotine patches had higher blood pressure and that the nicotine patches were ineffective. Dr Ivan Berlin, from the Hopital Pitie-Salpetriere-Universite in Paris, stated that the results were disappointing and suggests that new methods of treatment should be invented to help pregnant women quit smoking.
Smoking while pregnant is extremely dangerous as it may result in birth defects or even miscarriages. All doctors recommend that smoking be prohibited while pregnant and encourage pregnant women to seek treatment.
While the study was not necessarily conclusive, more research will be placed on the side effects of nicotine patches for women as the increase in blood pressure on the test subjects were considerably higher than those on the placebo.
Nicotine Patches Don’t Help Pregnant Women Quit Smoking Says Study.