The guidance concludes that clinical evidence and systematic reviews demonstrate that varenicline was superior to nicotine replacement therapy and bupropion (Zyban) in achieving continuous abstinence.
NICE recommends that varenicline should be used within its licensed indications as an option for smokers who have expressed a desire to quit smoking and that is should normally be prescribed only as part of a programme of behavioural support.
The review committee at NICE recognise that the availability of a different, additional treatment choice was beneficial, particularly as many smokers require more than one quit attempt.
Stakeholders have the opportunity to comment on this draft guidance. The final guidance is expected in July 2007.
The draft guidance Varenicline for smoking cessation can be downloaded from the NICE website.
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