Purpose

The current study will use the double-blind balanced placebo design to examine differences between expectancies versus the pharmacological effects of varenicline medication administered for two weeks to cigarette smokers. The double-blind balanced placebo design includes medication administration (active medication v. placebo) and medication information (told truth v. deception) resulting in four groups of smokers: (1) told therapeutic dose (TD) medication + received TD medication; (2) told TD medication + received placebo; (3) told low dose (LD) medication+ received TD dose medication; (4) told LD medication + received placebo. Ecological momentary assessments (EMA) in the form of Daily Dairies delivered via smartphone will assess real-time side effects, withdrawal symptoms, cigarettes smoked, medication use, and reasons for medication non-adherence.

Condition

Eligibility

Eligible Ages
Over 18 Years
Eligible Genders
All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers
Yes

Inclusion Criteria

  • 18 years or older
  • Smoking at least 5 cigarettes per day (cpd) for the past year
  • A carbon monoxide (CO) >10ppm
  • English speaking
  • Must own a cellphone with SMS text capacity with Internet access OR daily use of email
  • Must be varenicline naïve
  • Express a desire to quit smoking

Exclusion Criteria

  • Living in a restricted environment (e.g., prison or jail facility, etc.)
  • Pregnant or nursing
  • Currently enrolled in a smoking cessation treatment program, using NRT products, or prescribed bupropion or varenicline
  • Known allergy to varenicline
  • History of kidney disease, dialysis or known kidney impairment
  • Cognitive impairment or unstable psychiatric condition that interferes with the informed consent process (individuals stable on psychiatric medications will be included)
  • Daily or exclusive use of other tobacco products
  • Current suicidal or homicidal ideation or a suicidal attempt within the past 12 months
  • History of stroke, heart attack, or seizures

Study Design

Phase
Phase 4
Study Type
Interventional
Allocation
Randomized
Intervention Model
Factorial Assignment
Intervention Model Description
Balanced placebo design
Primary Purpose
Treatment
Masking
Double (Participant, Investigator)
Masking Description
double-blind

Arm Groups

ArmDescriptionAssigned Intervention
Active Comparator
Therapeutic Dose Truth
told therapeutic dose medication + received therapeutic dose medication
  • Drug: Varenicline
    Participants will be provided varenicline medication
Placebo Comparator
Therapeutic Dose Deception
told therapeutic dose medication + received placebo
  • Other: Placebo
    Participants will be provided placebo medication
Active Comparator
Low Dose Vareniclince Deception
told low dose medication + received therapeutic dose medication
  • Drug: Varenicline
    Participants will be provided varenicline medication
Placebo Comparator
Low Dose Placebo Deception
told low dose medication + received placebo
  • Other: Placebo
    Participants will be provided placebo medication

Recruiting Locations

University of Alabama at Birmingham
Birmingham, Alabama 35294
Contact:
Samantha P Schiavon, M.A.
205-975-4528
sschiavon@uabmc.edu

More Details

Status
Recruiting
Sponsor
University of Alabama at Birmingham

Study Contact

Detailed Description

The current proposal will utilize the double-blind balanced placebo design to differentiate expectancies versus pharmacologic mechanisms of varenicline administered to varenicline naïve smokers seeking treatment (N = 80) for two-weeks. Race block randomization (controlling for baseline expectancies) will be used to randomize participants. The double-blind balanced placebo design includes a cross-balanced medication administration (active medication v. placebo) and instructional set (told truth v. deception) resulting in four groups of smokers seeking treatment (n = 20 for each): (1) told therapeutic dose (TD) medication + received TD medication; (2) told TD medication + received placebo; (3) told low dose (LD) medication+ received TD dose medication; (4) told LD medication + received placebo. Participants will be told they received low dose (rather than placebo) due to concerns that participants will not take a medication that they believe to be a placebo. Ecological momentary assessments (EMA) in the form of Daily Dairies delivered via smartphone will assess real-time side effects, withdrawal symptoms, cigarettes smoked, medication use, and reasons for medication non-adherence. The current proposal will test the following specific aims:

Specific Aim 1: Examine the main effects of instructional set and pharmacology. Hypothesis 1: Main effects for TD instructional set and active medication administration will result in reduced medication adherence compared with LD instructional set and placebo medication.

Specific Aim 2: Examine the interaction between instructional set and pharmacology. Hypothesis 2: There will be a synergistic (i.e., non-additive) effect between instructional set and pharmacology. Specifically, those assigned to the TD instructional set and active medication group will result in a 50% discontinuation compared to a 20% discontinuation in the TD instructional set and placebo medication group.

Exploratory Aim: Evaluate moderators of pharmacology and expectancy effects on medication adherence. First, we will conduct exploratory examination of baseline medication expectancies moderating the relationship between pharmacology and medication adherence. Second, we will conduct an exploratory evaluation of potential moderators (e.g., gender and race) of pharmacology and baseline medication expectancy.

Notice

Study information shown on this site is derived from ClinicalTrials.gov (a public registry operated by the National Institutes of Health). The listing of studies provided is not certain to be all studies for which you might be eligible. Furthermore, study eligibility requirements can be difficult to understand and may change over time, so it is wise to speak with your medical care provider and individual research study teams when making decisions related to participation.