Smoking prevents healing of wounds, a problem for many sufferers of chronic diseases, who have pressure sores, venous leg ulcers and foot ulcers. However, researchers at The Ohio State University College of Nursing have found that doctors rarely counsel patients to quit smoking to promote wound healing. This represents a great opportunity for OTCs in Action to educate physicians and patients about nicotine replacement therapies.
Although nicotine is among the chemicals in cigarette smoke that constrict blood flow and slow healing, researchers say that nicotine replacement therapies do not appear to have the same effect. In fact, according to one researcher: “NRT has a vital role in cessation treatment.”
According to the study, about 6.5mn Americans with chronic wounds suffer from pain and some even need amputations. Surely the healing of these wounds would be a valuable incentive to quit the habit.
The global OTC market for smoking cessation products remained flat at $1.5bn (MAT September 2014), according to Nicholas Hall & Company’s OTC sales database DB6.