Randomized trial comparing mindfulness training for smokers to a matched control.


Smoking continues to take an enormous toll on society, and although most smokers would like to quit, most are unsuccessful using existing therapies. These findings call on researchers to develop and test therapies that provide higher rates of long-term smoking abstinence. We report results of a randomized controlled trial comparing a novel smoking cessation treatment using mindfulness training to a matched control based on the American Lung Association's Freedom From Smoking program. Data were collected on 175 low socioeconomic status smokers in 2011-2012 in a medium sized midwestern city. A significant difference was not found in the primary outcome; intent-to-treat biochemically confirmed 6-month smoking abstinence rates were mindfulness=25.0%, control=17.9% (p=0.35). Differences favoring the mindfulness condition were found on measures of urges and changes in mindfulness, perceived stress, and experiential avoidance. While no significant differences were found in quit rates, the mindfulness intervention resulted in positive outcomes.





Published Version (Please cite this version)


Publication Info

Davis, James M, Alison R Manley, Simon B Goldberg, Stevens S Smith and Douglas E Jorenby (2014). Randomized trial comparing mindfulness training for smokers to a matched control. J Subst Abuse Treat, 47(3). pp. 213–221. 10.1016/j.jsat.2014.04.005 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/11686.

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James Davis

Associate Professor of Medicine

Dr. James Davis is a practicing physician of Internal Medicine, and serves as the Medical Director for Duke Center for Smoking Cessation, Director of the Duke Smoking Cessation Program and Co-Director of the Duke-UNC Tobacco Treatment Specialist Credentialing Program.  His research focuses on development of new pharmaceutical treatments for smoking cessation.  He is principal investigator on several trials including a study on “adaptive” smoking cessation and several trials on new medications for smoking cessation. The new medications leverage more novel neurobiological mechanisms - NMDA receptor antagonism, nicotinic receptor antagonism, which impact addiction-based learning and cue response. Additionally, Dr. Davis serves as co-investigator on trials on lung cancer screening, e-cigarettes, minor nicotine alkaloids, imaging trials, lung function trials and others. Dr. Davis leads the Duke Smoke-Free Policy Initiative, is co-author on a national  tobacco dependence treatment guideline, and provides training in tobacco dependence treatment for the Duke School of Medicine, Duke Internal Medicine, Family Practice and Psychiatry residency programs.

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