Will Quit-Smoking E-mails be as Effective as Medications?


by Christina Matthews

Updated: May 26, 2017

quit smoking e-mails as a new opportunity

More and more healthcare practitioners have recognized the usage of technology as a beneficial factor in various treatments. It is not a wonder then that telemedicine is growing as a promising practice in treating the patients. The core value of telemedicine is that professionals provide proper education and proper healthcare to those in need of it. At the same time, these people might not be able to afford a face-to-face treatment.

How Medicine Benefits From Technology

It is true that smartphones and personal computers have become inevitable parts of our lives. In fact, it is almost to the extent of being our body extensions. American Cancer Society (ACS) has taken advantage of this. They are conducting a study about practices based on e-mails as support for quitting smoking.

The logic behind the idea is quite encouraging. The first benefit from this is the fact that these studies are cost-effective. They do not require high expenses or heavy burdening of patients’ financial stability. Additionally, users can have constant exposure to e-mails no matter where they are. The organizers would send these emails daily, or almost daily. Moreover, they tailored the emails to each participant. Also, the researchers usually formed content to carry essential aspects of messages without redirecting the reader to other platforms.

E-mails equally effective as quit-smoking meds

By basing their study on support e-mails, the ACS selected 1070 smokers who planned to quit.  Emails have been sent in a different form, in a different time manner, and to a different extent. A number of examinees received emails daily. Others got emails just a few times or once during the course of the study. E-mails also included free downloadable guides and additional sources on quitting.

They inquired the examinees additionally after one, three, and six months about the e-mail program. This practice brought up reassuring results. They found that about 30% of patients quit or reduced smoking. What was even more surprising is that these e-mails proved as efficient as quit-smoking medications.

The study leader, Lee Westmaas was thrilled to state:

The overall quit rate for the main intervention group is about equivalent to the abstinence rates achieved by the most effective medication for cessation.Dr. Lee Westmaas

However, given the fact that examinees were mostly educated Caucasians, Westmaas added that they have to implement the study on other social groups as well in order to prove fully successful.

Moreover, by being sent personalized e-mails, patients felt that someone continuously care about them. Some emails like spam can be a nuisance. However, sometimes, emails from the right people can be life-saving.

This is what CBS has to say about it:

Published: May 26, 2017

Christina Matthews

I love the written word, and in my career as a journalist, I strive to provide the facts about everything I write about. There are too many false and alarmist stories out there about life and vaping mainly. My mission is to make e-cigarettes less scary to people with informative articles and extensive research on not only the possible evils of cigarettes and Big Tobacco, but the objective side of e-cigs.


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