EVITA Trial Finds Varenicline is Effective For Smoking Cessation Following ACS

In patients hospitalized with acute coronary syndrome (ACS), varenicline in conjunction with low-intensity counseling, may be an effective therapy for smoking cessation, according to results of the EVITA trial presented Nov. 9 during AHA 2015 in Orlando and published simultaneously in Circulation.

The study looked at 302 patients who smoked 10 or more cigarettes per day, who were hospitalized with an ACS at 40 centers in the U.S. or Canada. Patients were randomized to either varenicline or placebo for 12 weeks and both groups received low-intensity counseling.

Results showed that at 24 weeks, the varenicline group had "significantly higher rates of smoking abstinence and reduction" as compared to the placebo group (47.3 percent vs. 32.5 percent). Further, continued abstinence rates were 35.8 percent and 25.8 percent, respectively.

The investigators conclude that, "these findings suggest that smoking remains a persistent problem in patients experiencing an ACS and that varenicline is an efficacious pharmacotherapy for smoking cessation in these patients." They add that moving forward, "future studies are needed to establish safety in these patients."

Clinical Topics: Acute Coronary Syndromes, Prevention, Smoking

Keywords: AHA Annual Scientific Sessions, Acute Coronary Syndrome, Benzazepines, Quinoxalines, Smoking, Smoking Cessation, Smoke


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