Smoking cessation in methadone maintenance

Steve Shoptaw, Erin Rotheram-Fuller, Xiaowei Yang, Dominick Frosch, Debbie Nahom, Murray E. Jarvik, Richard A. Rawson, Walter Ling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

206 Scopus citations


Aims: To evaluate relapse prevention (relapse prevention) and contingency management (contingency management) for optimizing smoking cessation outcomes using nicotine replacement therapy for methadone-maintained tobacco smokers. Design: Experimental. 2 (relapse prevention) x 2 (contingency management) repeated measures design using a platform of nicotine replacement therapy featuring a 2-week baseline period, followed by randomization to 12 weeks of treatment, and 6- and 12-month follow-up visits. Setting: Three narcotic treatment centers in Los Angeles. Participants: One hundred and seventy-five participants who met all inclusion and no exclusion criteria. Intervention: Participants received 12 weeks of nicotine replacement therapy and assignment to one of four conditions: patch-only, relapse prevention + patch, contingency management + patch and relapse prevention + contingency management + patch. Measurements: Thrice weekly samples of breath (analyzed for carbon monoxide) and urine (analyzed for metabolites of opiates and cocaine) and weekly self-reported numbers of cigarettes smoked. Findings: Participants (73.1%) completed 12 weeks of treatment. During treatment, those assigned to receive contingency management showed statistically higher rates of smoking abstinence than those not assigned to receive contingencies (F3.4680=6.3, P=0.0003), with no similar effect observed for relapse prevention. At follow-up evaluations, there were no significant differences between conditions. Participants provided more opiate and cocaine-free urines during weeks when they met criteria for smoking abstinence than during weeks when they did not meet these criteria (F1.2054=14.38, P=0.0002; F1.2419=16.52, P<0.0001). Conclusions: Contingency management optimized outcomes using nicotine replacement therapy for reducing cigarette smoking during treatment for opiate dependence, although long-term effects are not generally maintained. Findings document strong associations between reductions in cigarette smoking and reductions in illicit substance use during treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1317-1328
Number of pages12
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Contingency management
  • Methadone maintenance
  • Relapse prevention
  • Smoking cessation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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