Effectiveness of decision aids for smoking cessation in adults: a quantitative systematic review

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Abstract

Objective:

The objective of the review was to determine the effectiveness of the use of decision aids to facilitate the shared decision-making process between a person and a healthcare provider on smoking cessation rates, knowledge of smoking cessation methods and decisional quality.

Introduction:

The tobacco epidemic is one of the biggest health threats in the world, and it is the single most important preventable cause of disease. In the smoking cessation process, people move through different stages in their readiness to quit. Healthcare providers are well positioned to impact smoking cessation, however, challenges continue to exist. Using decision aids in the smoking cessation decision-making process may be one means in moving people toward the decision to quit smoking.

Inclusion criteria:

The review considered randomized controlled trials and quasi-experimental studies which included adults, 18 years and over, who smoke tobacco products. The intervention of interest was implementation of decision aids to promote shared decision-making related to smoking cessation. The comparator was usual care without the use of decision aids. Outcomes of interest were smoking abstinence, smoking quit attempts, knowledge of smoking cessation methods and decisional quality.

Methods:

A comprehensive search was undertaken to locate relevant published and unpublished quantitative English language studies from the inception of each database searched through July 30, 2017. Databases searched included: CINAHL, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Embase, PsycINFO and PubMed. A search of gray literature was also performed. Titles and abstracts were screened by two independent reviewers for assessment against the inclusion criteria. Studies meeting the inclusion criteria were retrieved in full and assessed in detail against the inclusion criteria by two independent reviewers. Two reviewers independently evaluated the included studies for methodological quality using critical appraisal tools from the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI). Data related to the methods, participants, interventions and findings were extracted by two independent reviewers using a standardized data extraction tool from JBI. Due to clinical and methodological heterogeneity in the interventions and outcome measures of the included studies, statistical meta-analysis was not possible. Results have been presented in narrative form.

Results:

Eight papers representing seven unique studies evaluating smoking cessation decision aids were included. Of the six studies that measured abstinence, only two had positive findings, with one reaching statistical significance. The fours studies that measured quit attempts all demonstrated a trend toward an increase in the number of quit attempts, with one study reaching statistical significance. Four of the five studies that measured knowledge reported an initial increase in the knowledge of smoking cessation methods, with two studies reaching statistical significance. Two of the three studies that measured decisional quality showed an improvement in decisional quality after use of the decision aid, with one study reaching statistical significance.

Conclusions:

The evidence suggests that decision aids may be effective in increasing smoking cessation knowledge and decisional quality while increasing quit attempts. There is, however, inconclusive evidence to support the definitive effectiveness of decision aids for long term and sustained smoking cessation.

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