Smoking is a well-known risk factor for complications after surgery. Studies of interventions to encourage smokers to stop smoking before their operation show that short- and long-term quitting can be achieved. Evidence from two small trials indicates that interventions that begin four to eight weeks before surgery, which include weekly counselling and use NRT, support smoking cessation and may reduce complication rates. Brief interventions support short-term smoking cessation but there is insufficient evidence from this review to determine whether they reduce complications. This may be due to the longer period of pre-operative abstinence that can be achieved when interventions begin four to eight weeks before surgery.
Can people be helped to stop smoking before they have surgery?
September 8, 2010
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