JOURNAL ARTICLE
REVIEW

Women's use of nicotine replacement therapy in pregnancy-a structured review of the literature

Cathy A Ashwin, Kim Watts
Midwifery 2010, 26 (3): 304-10
18926608

OBJECTIVE: to review the literature of women's use of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) during pregnancy. The review will examine NRT and nicotine, interventions and barriers to smoking cessation and the literature exploring women's views on using NRT in pregnancy.

METHOD: a structured review of the literature was undertaken by accessing internet and library sources, restricted to English written articles between 1989 and 2003. Keywords were used to refine the search: pregnancy, smoking, NRT and smoking cessation.

FINDINGS: several papers had examined interventions employed to aid pregnant women in smoking cessation and the efficacy of NRT. However, papers exploring the views of women on the use of NRT during pregnancy were limited.

CONCLUSIONS: smoking cessation is unique to individual women; as such, appropriate support and advice should be tailored accordingly. Further research is needed to explore the views of women using NRT during pregnancy to aid smoking cessation.

IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: the findings from this structured review raise awareness of the importance of smoking cessation during pregnancy, and the inclusion of women's views when discussing the use of NRT. Understanding women's views may enhance the care and advice given by midwives, thus improving smoking cessation rates in pregnancy.

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