On Paying The Price To Quit Smoking

by Dr. Antonio Howell, MD

in Blog, quit smoking

Dr. Howell

Ever wonder what’s in the price you pay for stuff? The psychology of pricing has always intrigued me. But before that I want to talk about Chantix and quitting smoking.

What is the big problem with Chantix?

The problem with Chantix is that it works. Chantix appears more effective than the nicotine patch and wellbutrin in helping people stop smoking, European and U.S. researchers report.

In a study of 746 smokers, the investigators found that 56 percent of those who took for Chantix for 12 weeks were cigarette-free during the last month of treatment. That compared with 43 percent of those who used a nicotine Close-up-of-a-men-s-quadruple--26151053patch.

The study, funded by Chantix’s maker Pfizer Inc., is published in the medical journal Thorax.


I did a personal and unofficial survey of doctors I know who prescribe Chantix. And I learned that about 70% of the patients who took Chantix (varenicline) quit smoking without problems. It was pretty easy…they took the pill and the urge to smoke disappeared. Now what’s wrong with that?


Chantix cost is not much if you have insurance. And combine this with the fact that you only have to take a pill to quit smoking. It is understandable why Chantix has a high relapse rate.


Before I get to my point let me tell you a story:  About several years ago I bought a pair of $250 Maui Jim sunglasses. I was a poor resident at the time and that was a significant investment. And the funny this is I still have those glasses today. Before that I constantly lost my sunglasses and had to replace them. I would go to the supermarket and buy a cheap pair to wear and soon this pair would usually get lost too.

It’s a psychological issue that when something is given away for free or cost very little we tend to undervalue it. If it was easy to quit, you may find it is easy to start back again. THAT is the problem with Chantix.

Sometimes you have to pay HIGH price to see the value of things. SO that when you DO quit, you quit for GOOD.

To Your Success,
Dr. Howell, MD


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