Bupropion for smoking cessation: Predictors of successful outcome

Lowell C. Dale, Elbert D. Glover, David P.L. Sachs, Darrell R. Schroeder, Kenneth P. Offord, Ivana T. Croghan, Richard D. Hurt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

161 Scopus citations


Objectives: To identify predictors of smoking abstinence at the end of medication use that could assist in the optimal use of a sustained-release (SR) form of bupropion for treating cigarette smokers. Design: A double-blind, placebo-controlled, dose-response trial. Setting: Multicenter (three sites) study conducted in the United States. Participants: Six hundred fifteen healthy men and women (≥ 18 years of age) who were smoking ≥ 15 cigarettes per day and who were motivated to stop smoking. Intervention: Random assignment of patients to placebo or SR bupropion treatment, 100, 150, or 300 mg/d, for 7 weeks (total duration of study was 52 weeks: 7 weeks of treatment and 45 weeks of follow-up). Measurements and results: Logistic regression was used to identify predictors of abstinence at the end of the medication phase. Univariate predictors included the following: bupropion dose (p > 0.001); older age (p = 0.024); lower number of cigarettes smoked per day (cpd) (p > 0.001); lower Fagerström Tolerance Questionnaire score (p = 0.011); longest time previously abstinent that was > 24 h or < 4 weeks (p > 0.001); absence of other smokers in the household (p = 0.021); greater number of previous stop attempts (p = 0.019); and study site (p = 0.004). Multivariate predictors of abstinence at the end of the medication phase were the following: higher bupropion dose (p > 0.001); lower number of cpd (p > 0.001); longest time previously abstinent from smoking (p = 0.002); male gender (p = 0.014); and study site (p = 0.021). Conclusion: Bupropion SR therapy was effective in treating cigarette smokers independently of all other characteristics studied. Lower smoking rate, brief periods (ie, > 24 h) or long periods (ie, < 4 weeks) of abstinence with previous attempts to stop smoking, and male gender were predictive of better outcomes, independent of the dose of bupropion that was used.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1357-1364
Number of pages8
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2001


  • Abstinence
  • Bupropion
  • Nicotine
  • Nicotine dependence
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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