Steven LaRowe, Ph.D.
BS Psychology, 1993, Michigan State University
MS Clinical Psychology, 1997, Florida State University
Ph.D. Clinical Psychology, 2002, Florida State University
Intern, Clinical Psychology, 2002, Florida State University
Fellow, Addictions Research, 2005, Medical University of South Carolina
A Randomized Controlled Trial of Oral N-Acetylcysteine for Smoking Reduction
This pilot examined whether N-Acetylcysteine (NAC) might facilitate reduction of tobacco cigarette use. Regular daily smokers (> 10 cig./day) interested in reducing their cigarette smoking were recruited. Thirty-three subjects were randomized to receive either placebo or 1200 mg of NAC twice daily for 4 weeks. Patients completed weekly visits. At each visit, craving, withdrawal, and carbon-monoxide (CO) levels were measured. In addition, patients completed smoking diaries in which they recorded daily tobacco cigarette use. Craving, withdrawal ratings, and measured CO levels did not differ significantly over the course of the 4-week trial. Initial results indicated that results for self-reported daily smoking tended to favor NAC. When alcohol-use days were removed from the analysis the data suggested that those in the NAC group smoked less over time. These results suggest that NAC may reduce tobacco smoking, but that alcohol use may diminish this effect.