The gap between tobacco treatment guidelines, health service organization, and clinical practice in comprehensive cancer centres

R. Mazza, M. Lina, G. Invernizzi, M. Pierotti, C. De Marco, C. Borreani, R. Boffi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Smoking cessation is necessary to reach a higher quality of life, and, for a cancer patient, it represents an important step in improving the outcome of both prognosis and therapy. Being a cancer patient addicted to nicotine may be a critical situation. We conducted a survey to monitor how many comprehensive cancer centres in Italy have an outpatient smoker clinic and which kinds of resources are available. We also inquired about inpatient services offering psychological and pharmacological support for smoking cessation, reduction, or care of acute nicotine withdrawal symptoms. What we have witnessed is a significant gap between guidelines and services. Oncologists and cancer nurses are overscheduled, with insufficient time to engage in discussion on a problem that they do not consider directly related to cancer treatment. Furthermore, smoking habits and limited training in tobacco dependence and treatment act as an important barrier and lead to the undervaluation of smokers' needs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number145617
JournalJournal of Oncology
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology

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