[Smoking cessation – achievable and effective].
In hospital, effective smoking cessation can be organized through counselling, pharmacological aids and, above all, continuous care in outpatient structures following discharge. Pharmacological treatment has proven to be effective and safe with nicotine replacement therapy as well as varenicline. Counselling plus pharmacotherapy is more effective in combination than either therapy is on its own. To better implement structures medical societies in Germany are seeking adequate funding e. g. in the DRG system for hospitalised patients.There are obvious and relevant benefits in smoking cessation. Not only for the main tobacco-related diseases such as coronary heart disease or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), positive effects of quitting on morbidity and mortality have been confirmed by high-quality meta-analyses. Furthermore, quality of life is increasing following cessation. Presently, smoking is found to be a significant risk factor for severe disease and mortality following coronavirus infection.Do e-cigarettes offer an alternative in smoking cessation? No. Animal and human data are suggesting toxic effects especially following longer use. The long-term effectiveness of e-cigarettes in tobacco cessation is still uncertain and epidemiologic data clearly point toward ineffectiveness. Furthermore, dual use with potentiation of the toxic effects is common. Therefore, e-cigarettes cannot be recommended for tobacco cessation.Thieme. All rights reserved.