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Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 1020-4989

Abstract

ALFARO, Mariana Elizabeth  and  SIMI, Marcelo Ricardo. Effectiveness of the "Five-Day Plan to Stop Smoking" in a city in Argentina. Rev Panam Salud Publica [online]. 2007, vol.21, n.5, pp. 301-306. ISSN 1020-4989.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1020-49892007000400005.

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the effectiveness of the "Five-Day Plan to Stop Smoking" at the end of the intervention and after one year in a sample of participants in the city of Rosario, Santa Fe, Argentina. METHODS: The quasi-experimental, longitudinal, prospective cohort, comparative study was based on the evaluation of the effectiveness of the "Five-Day Plan to Stop Smoking" in Rosario, Argentina, with eight groups of participants. Each session of the five-night course included presentations on medical aspects of smoking, an emphasis on group support in quitting, and relaxation techniques. The eight groups included a total of 739 people (50.5% of them women and 49.5% men). Using a sample of 281 participants who were chosen at random, effectiveness was evaluated immediately after the end of each course and again after one year. Effectiveness was assessed in relation to the age the subjects began smoking, the average daily consumption of cigarettes, the number of years participants had smoked, their educational level, the number of previous attempts to quit smoking, and the level of nicotine dependence as measured by the Fagerström scale. Association among qualitative variables was determined using relative risk (RR), with 95% confidence intervals. Differences in the means of quantitative variables were determined using the t test for independent samples. The chi-square test was used to establish differences among the categorical variables studied. RESULTS: Of the 281 participants (138 men and 143 women) in the sample, 201 (71.5%) (104 men and 97 women) quit smoking by the end of the course, and 77 (27.4%) (48 men and 29 women) did not smoke after one year. There was a significant association between relapse and female gender (RR = 1.22; P = 0.005), as was there for a score > 7 on the Fagerström scale of nicotine dependence (RR = 1.17; P = 0.03). Beginning to smoke before the age of 20 was a protective factor against relapse among those attending the "Five-Day Plan to Stop Smoking" courses. The most frequent determinants of relapse were abstinence syndrome symptoms (40.3%) and stressful situations (28.2%). CONCLUSIONS: The "Five-Day Plan to Stop Smoking" is an effective tool for secondary prevention of smoking. In the study population its effectiveness was associated with male gender and with a lower level of nicotine dependence.

Keywords : Smoking cessation; Argentina.

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