Your article about the dangers involved in taking anti-smoking treatments (WDDTY, vol 8 no 6) is interesting if seen beside the report from the Office of National Statistics, Health in England 1996, promoted by the Health Education Authority.
This shows that 91 per cent of ex-smokers had given up by the use of their will power. Nicotine chewing gum was found useful by only 5 per cent, patches by 5 per cent, advice from the doctor by 7 per cent, and special clinics or stop smoking groups by 1 per cent (percentages total more than 100 as some respondents used more than one method).
Of those who had tried and failed to give up smoking, the percentages were: 81 per cent, will power; 37 per cent, chewing gum or patches; doctor's advice, 8 per cent; and special clinic or stop smoking group, 2 per cent.
Since nearly three times as many smokers who failed to give up used gum or patches as those who succeeded, it appears that such "aids" are not only dangerous, but relatively useless. Judith Hatton, Teddington, Middx........