PHILADELPHIA, May 23 /PRNewswire/ --

- NiQuitin 4 mg lozenge helps reverse symptoms associated with nicotine withdrawal including difficulty concentrating, attention deficit, memory deficit and selective attention deficit

The United States' Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced yesterday that it has removed a prescription anti-smoking pill from their approved list of safe medications for pilots and air-traffic controllers. This announcement followed a new analysis of adverse event data from the non-profit Institute for Safe Medication Practices which linked the medication to mental confusion and other problems that could put passengers at risk. It's important to note this news does not include therapeutic nicotine which is deemed safe and effective.(1) Further, recent research has found the NiQuitin/Nicabate 4mg lozenge has been clinically proven to help reverse nicotine withdrawal symptoms associated with quitting smoking including the following: difficulty concentrating, attention deficit, short-term memory deficit and selective attention deficit(2) -- some of the issues at the core of yesterday's report.

In 1994, the FAA requested the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) assemble an expert panel to examine the effects of smoking and tobacco addiction and withdrawal on pilot performance and airline safety. As part of the panel's conclusion, they found therapeutic nicotine to be safe, effective treatment option for pilots who smoke.(1) These recommendations stand to this day.

"Nicotine withdrawal is a serious issue for pilots who are in the process of quitting smoking, and today's news could have a dramatic impact on these individuals," said Jack E. Henningfield, Ph.D., Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Vice President Research & Health Policy, Pinney Associates, and consultant for GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare. "What they need to understand is that therapeutic nicotine such as the NiQuitin/Nicabate lozenge and patch is safe for quitters, including pilots who use it while flying,(1) and can help with the serious effects of withdrawal."

Smoking remains one of the leading causes of preventable death and disease and one of the most powerful and important addictions to break and many smokers can't do it alone. Evidence-based treatments, such as therapeutic nicotine offer a better chance of quitting versus cold turkey, where only 3-5 percent of smokers are successful long-term.(3)

Therapeutic nicotine including the NiQuitin lozenge and patch (brand name Nicabate in Australia) can help relieve withdrawal symptoms and cravings during smoking cessation. More than 110 studies involving approximately 40,000 smokers have demonstrated the safety of therapeutic even in populations with specific health conditions, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, lung disease, and existing heart disease.(4)

GlaxoSmithKline's line of therapeutic nicotine products such as Nicorette gum (United States only), NicoDerm CQ patch and Commit lozenge, and NiQuitin and Nicabate brands outside of the United States, are easy to access in thousands of retail outlets and pharmacies worldwide. These products are designed specifically to break the daily addiction cycle by offering a gradual, controlled delivery of nicotine to the body, helping to relieve cravings and withdrawal symptoms.

NOTE: GlaxoSmithKline distributes Nicorette(R) gum, Nicoderm(R) patch and Commit(R) lozenge in the United States. Outside of the U.S., its smoking cessation patch and lozenge are marketed as Nicabate(R) in Australia and NiQuitin(R) in other countries.

1. Fiore 1994, The effects of smoking and smoking withdrawal on flight performance. 2. GSK Data on file, Study S2540345 report Boyle et al 2006. 3. Fiore MC, Bailey WC, Cohen SJ, et al. Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence. Clinical Practice Guideline. Rockville, MD: 4. Stead LF, Perera R, Bullen C,Mant D, Lancaster T. Nicotine replacement therapy for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2008, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD000146. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD000146.pub3.