Repackaging Cigarette Addiction: Yale Researchers Call on the FDA to Update Guidelines on Nicotine Replacement Products

With more than 480,000 people in the U.S. dying each year from tobacco-related causes – and another 16 million suffering from tobacco-related illnesses, two Yale researchers are calling on the FDA to update its guidelines on nicotine replacement products (NRTs) to match current science.

Thousands of people desperate to quit smoking could be helped by knowing that NRTs, powerful and safe tools for smoking cessation, can be used earlier, longer, and in different combinations than current FDA guidelines and current product labeling indicate, according to Lisa Fucito, PhD, and Benjamin Toll, PhD, both clinical psychologists at the Yale University School of Medicine.

"Twenty million people in the U.S. have died from smoking since 1965, yet we keep addicting people to this horrible product," said Drs. Fucito and Toll. "NRTs have been around for 30 years, and there is ample science supporting their success in helping people quit. We’d like to see the FDA keep pace with what researchers – and many former smokers – already know about how broadly NRTs can be used."

Drs. Fucito and Toll are the lead and senior authors, respectively, on a position statement published online Wednesday, June 10, 2014 in Nicotine & Tobacco Research, a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the study of nicotine and tobacco.

This article was submitted by Renee Elizabeth Gaudette on June 11, 2014.