Tobacco control in patients treated for chronic pain: A survey of pain fellowship program directors

Sandeep Kadimpati, Bryan C. Hoelzer, W. Michael Hooten, David O. Warner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Objectives: Previous studies have established the relationship between tobacco use and pain severity among patients suffering from chronic pain. Unfortunately, many physicians feel underprepared to counsel patients on smoking cessation. The purpose of this study was to identify the attitudes, beliefs, and practices of pain medicine fellowship directors in regard to tobacco control interventions and trainee education. Methods: Program directors of ACGME-accredited pain medicine fellowships were surveyed via a web-based form to assess current practices in tobacco intervention and to gauge interest in incorporating tobacco control into their current fellowship training curriculum. Results: Of the respondents, the majority indicated that they frequently asking their patients about tobacco use and advise them to quit. In addition, most agreed that presenting tobacco control is a responsibility of pain physicians. However, few consistently provided any assistance with quitting. Finally, the majority of program directors felt that pain medicine fellowships should include tobacco control training and were interested in incorporating an educational module about smoking and pain into their training program. Conclusions: This survey of pain medicine fellowship program directors indicates that although smoking cessation interventions are not being consistently applied in academic pain practices, there is a strong interest in doing so. Furthermore, the majority of program directors recognized the importance of incorporating tobacco control training into pain medicine fellowships. This recognition may provide an opportunity to develop a web-based training module that could be easily incorporated into the upcoming milestones in pain medicine training.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)541-546
Number of pages6
JournalPain Practice
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jul 2014


  • Education
  • Fellowship and training
  • Pain fellowship
  • Survey
  • Tobacco control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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