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Stop-Smoking Drug Is Safe: Study

Stop-Smoking Drug Is Safe: Study
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By    |   Tuesday, 08 September 2015 01:25 PM

New research is challenging past studies linking the smoking-cessation drug varenicline (brand name Chantix) to depression and heart disease.

Contrary to previous studies, the latest findings by researchers from the Centre for Medical Informatics at the University of Edinburgh in the UK found smokers who take varenicline to help them quite have are not more likely to suffer heart disease, depression, and self-harm, Medical News Today reports.

Varenicline was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2006 to help people quit smoking. It works by reducing brain chemicals tied to nicotine cravings.

Previously, studies have tied varenicline to poorer heart health and mental health problems.
But the latest study, published in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, tracked the potential side effects of varenicline on more than 150,000 British smokers who attempted to quit the habit.

Some of the smokers used nicotine replacement therapy, such as nicotine gum or patches, as a smoking-cessation aid, while others were prescribed varenicline or another antismoking medication called bupropion.

The researchers tracked the health of all participants for up to six months, and found those using varenicline did not have any increased incidence of heart disease, depression and self harm, compared to the others in the study.

"On the basis of our extensive analysis, we believe it is highly unlikely that varenicline has any significant adverse effects on cardiac or mental health,” said study co-author Prof. Aziz Sheikh.
“Regulators such as the FDA should review its safety warning in relation to varenicline as this may be unnecessarily limiting access to this effective smoking cessation aid."

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New research is challenging past studies linking the smoking-cessation drug Chantix to depression and heart disease. Contrary to previous studies, the latest findings say the drug is safe.
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2015-25-08
Tuesday, 08 September 2015 01:25 PM
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