Effect of early medication adherence on behavioral treatment utilization and smoking cessation among individuals with current or past major depressive disorder

Brian Hitsman*, George D. Papandonatos, Erica N. Fox, Anna Marika Bauer, Jacqueline K. Gollan, Mark D. Huffman, David C. Mohr, Frank T. Leone, Sadiya S. Khan, Chad J. Achenbach, E. Paul Wileyto, Robert A. Schnoll

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Significance: Little is known about the mechanisms by which medication adherence promotes smoking cessation among adults with MDD. We tested the hypothesis that early adherence promotes abstinence by increasing behavioral treatment (BT) utilization. Methods: Data for this post-hoc analysis were from a randomized trial of 149 adults with current or past MDD treated with BT and either varenicline (n = 81) or placebo (n = 68). Arms were matched on medication regimen. Early medication adherence was measured by the number of days in which medication was taken at the prescribed dose during the first six of 12 weeks of pharmacological treatment (weeks 2–7). BT consisted of eight 45-minute sessions (weeks 1–12). Bioverified abstinence was assessed at end-of-treatment (week 14). A regression-based approach was used to test whether the effect of early medication adherence on abstinence was mediated by BT utilization. Results: Among 141 participants who initiated the medication regimen, BT utilization mediated the effect of early medication adherence on abstinencea) an interquartile increase in early medication days from 20 to 42 predicted a 4.2 times increase in abstinence (Total Risk Ratio (RR) = 4.24, 95% CI = 2.32–13.37; p <.001); b) increases in BT sessions predicted by such an increase in early medication days were associated with a 2.7 times increase in abstinence (Indirect RR = 2.73, 95% CI = 1.54–7.58; p <.001); and c) early medication adherence effects on abstinence were attenuated, controlling for BT (Direct RR = 1.55, 95% CI = 0.83–4.23, p =.17). Conclusions: The effect of early medication adherence on abstinence in individuals with current or past MDD is mediated by intensive BT utilization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number107952
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Volume151
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2024

Keywords

  • Adults
  • Behavioral treatment
  • Major depression
  • Medication adherence
  • Pharmacotherapy
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology

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