Smoking characteristics and comorbidities in the power to quit randomized clinical trial for homeless smokers

  • Okuyemi K
  • Goldade K
  • Whembolua G
 et al. 
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Abstract

Smoking prevalence in homeless populations is strikingly high (similar
to 70%); yet, little is known about effective smoking cessation
interventions for this population. We conducted a community-based
clinical trial, Power To Quit (PTQ), to assess the effects of
motivational interviewing (MI) and nicotine patch (nicotine replacement
therapy {[}NRT]) on smoking cessation among homeless smokers. This paper
describes the smoking characteristics and comorbidities of smokers in
the study.
Four hundred and thirty homeless adult smokers were randomized to either
the intervention arm (NRT + MI) or the control arm (NRT + Brief Advice).
Baseline assessment included demographic information, shelter status,
smoking history, motivation to quit smoking, alcohol/other substance
abuse, and psychiatric comorbidities.
Of the 849 individuals who completed the eligibility survey, 578
(68.1%) were eligible and 430 (74.4% of eligibles) were enrolled.
Participants were predominantly Black, male, and had mean age of 44.4
years (SD = 9.9), and the majority were unemployed (90.5%). Most
participants reported sleeping in emergency shelters; nearly half had
been homeless for more than a year. Nearly all the participants were
daily smokers who smoked an average of 20 cigarettes/day. Nearly 40%
had patient health questionnaire-9 depression scores in the moderate or
worse range, and more than 80% screened positive for lifetime history
of drug abuse or dependence.
This study demonstrates the feasibility of enrolling a diverse sample of
homeless smokers into a smoking cessation clinical trial. The uniqueness
of the study sample enables investigators to examine the influence of
nicotine dependence as well as psychiatric and substance abuse
comorbidities on smoking cessation outcomes.

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Authors

  • Kolawole S. Okuyemi

  • Kate Goldade

  • Guy Lucien Whembolua

  • Janet L. Thomas

  • Sara Eischen

  • Hongfei Guo

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