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Chantix (Varenicline Tartrate) - Summary

 
 



CHANTIX SUMMARY

CHANTIX™ (varenicline) Tablets

CHANTIX™ tablets contain the active ingredient, varenicline (as the tartrate salt), which is a partial agonist selective for α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes. Varenicline, as the tartrate salt, is a powder which is a white to off-white to slightly yellow solid with the following chemical name: 7,8,9,10-tetrahydro-6,10-methano-6 H -pyrazino[2,3-h][3]benzazepine, (2 R,3 R)-2,3-dihydroxybutanedioate (1:1). It is highly soluble in water.

CHAMPIX is indicated as an aid to smoking cessation treatment.


See all Chantix indications & dosage >>

NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

Media Articles Related to Chantix (Varenicline)

Varenicline combined with nicotine patch improves smoking cessation rates
Source: Smoking / Quit Smoking News From Medical News Today [2014.07.09]
Combining the smoking cessation medication varenicline with nicotine replacement therapy was more effective than varenicline alone at achieving tobacco abstinence at 6 months, according to a study...

Smoking cessation counseling during hospitalization could be cost-effective
Source: Smoking / Quit Smoking News From Medical News Today [2014.06.21]
In a recent study published in Tobacco Control, researchers at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute have demonstrated the cost-effectiveness of the Ottawa Model for Smoking Cessation (OMSC), an...

Nicotine in e-cigarettes and smoking cessation devices 'carcinogenic'
Source: Lung Cancer News From Medical News Today [2014.06.16]
Research into the carcinogenic properties of nicotine may have severe implications for popular smoking cessation devices such as e-cigarettes and nicotine patches.

Incentives to breastfeed and quit smoking backed by the young
Source: Pregnancy / Obstetrics News From Medical News Today [2014.07.18]
Men and women aged 44 or younger are more likely to agree with financial incentives to encourage breast feeding and smoking cessation during pregnancy compared to those aged 65 and over.

HypeWatch: E-Cigs Best Cessation Tool Ever, Really? (CME/CE)
Source: MedPage Today Allergy & Immunology [2014.05.20]
(MedPage Today) -- A retrospective analysis comparing smoking cessation initiatives found that the e-cigarette was an effective cessation aid -- more effective than use of over-the-counter nicotine replacement aids -- but the study design casts doubt on that conclusion.

more news >>

Published Studies Related to Chantix (Varenicline)

Effects of 21 days of varenicline versus placebo on smoking behaviors and urges among non-treatment seeking smokers. [2012]
Varenicline promotes smoking cessation and reduces urges to smoke. However, the mechanisms associated with these effects and their time course are not well characterized...

The effects of extended pre-quit varenicline treatment on smoking behavior and short-term abstinence: a randomized clinical trial. [2012]
Preclinical research and learning theory suggest that a longer duration of varenicline treatment prior to the target quit date (TQD) would reduce smoking rates before cessation and improve abstinence outcomes. A double-blind randomized controlled trial tested this hypothesis in 60 smokers randomized to either an Extended run-in group (4 weeks of pre-TQD varenicline) or a Standard run-in group (3 weeks of placebo, 1 week of pre-TQD varenicline); all the participants received 11 weeks of post-TQD varenicline and brief counseling...

Smoking cessation pharmacogenetics: analysis of varenicline and bupropion in placebo-controlled clinical trials. [2012]
Despite effective therapies for smoking cessation, most smokers find quitting difficult and most successful quitters relapse. Considerable evidence supports a genetic risk for nicotine dependence; however, less is known about the pharmacogenetics of smoking cessation... Different loci are associated with varenicline vs bupropion response, suggesting that additional research may identify clinically useful markers to guide treatment decisions.

Effects of varenicline and bupropion on cognitive processes among nicotine-deprived smokers. [2012]
Nicotine deprivation is associated with craving, negative affect, and difficulty concentrating, which may contribute to subsequent relapse... Identifying these mechanisms may help in the development of new pharmacological treatments.

Results of an initial clinical trial of varenicline for the treatment of cocaine dependence. [2012]
agonist seemed to be a likely candidate for treating cocaine dependence... CONCLUSIONS: Varenicline appears to decrease cocaine use and reward, suggesting

more studies >>

Clinical Trials Related to Chantix (Varenicline)

Study of Mood Effects of Varenicline (Chantix) in Depressed Outpatient Smokers [Recruiting]
This study will assess whether varenicline (chantix) has antidepressant properties when used in addition to other psychiatric medication. It will also assess whether varenicline improves the inability to feel pleasure (i. e. anhedonia), and if it is well-tolerated when used with psychiatric medications.

Enrolled patients will be assessed for improved mood, improved anhedonia, overall sense of health, side effects as well as tobacco use for 6-8 weeks.

Medication will be provided free of charge.

Varenicline and Bupropion for Smoking Cessation [Recruiting]
This study provides an opportunity to combine varenicline and bupropion SR and capitalize on the potential additive benefit. The investigators hypothesize that this will further increase long-term (≥ 6 months) smoking abstinence rates.

Evaluation of Varenicline (Champix) in Smoking Cessation for Patients Post-Acute Coronary Syndrome (EVITA) Trial [Not yet recruiting]
The EVITA study is a clinical trial that will test the effect of varenicline (Champix™), a new drug used to help people quit smoking, in patients who have suffered a heart attack. Varenicline has been recently shown to increase the number of otherwise healthy people who quit smoking compared to placebo (sugar pill). Although varenicline has been shown to reduce smoking in healthy populations, its effectiveness in patients recovering from a heart attack is unknown. The EVITA trial will help answer this question.

A total of 300 patients who have recently suffered a heart attack and are active smokers will be recruited in the study. For twelve weeks, half the patients will receive varenicline and the other half will receive placebo pills. Patients will be followed for a period of 12 months. During this time, patients will receive telephone calls and go to clinic visits in order to assess if they are smoking. These follow-ups will also assess any side effects and clinical events such as another heart attack or hospitalization that patients may have had. Smoking cessation will be checked using exhaled carbon monoxide readings and self-reports.

The EVITA trial will be the first study to examine the use of varenicline in patients who have recently had a heart attack. These patients, if they continue to smoke, are at high risk of having another cardiac event. If varenicline is shown to be useful in this population, it will have a major impact on prevention of cardiac events in patients who have suffered a heart attack.

Does Varenicline Influence Alcohol Consumption in Alcohol Dependent Individuals? [Recruiting]
The aim of the present clinical trial is to investigate whether 14 weeks of treatment with a prescription medication for smoking cessation (European trade name: Champix(R); US trade name: Chantix(R)), can reduce alcohol consumption in alcohol dependent individuals.

Study of Varenicline (Champix) for Smoking Cessation/Reduction in Patients With Bipolar Disorder [Recruiting]
Bipolar Disorder is a chronic relapsing mental disorder characterized by periods of elevated, expansive and irritable mood, often alternating with periods of significant clinical depression. People with Bipolar Disorder are typically heavy smokers who have difficulty quitting, and this is associated with significant tobacco-related medical illness and death.

The proposed study will be a double-blind, placebo-controlled 10-week clinical trial of the safety and efficacy of varenicline (Champix™) in thirty subjects with Bipolar I Disorder. This medication is the latest first-line pharmacotherapy for smoking cessation and has been shown to be efficacious for smoking cessation, but has not yet been systematically studied in persons with Bipolar Disorder.

more trials >>

Reports of Suspected Chantix (Varenicline) Side Effects

Depression (1644)Anxiety (1344)Abnormal Dreams (1126)Nausea (1078)Suicide Attempt (766)Insomnia (654)Aggression (608)Drug Ineffective (604)Suicidal Ideation (572)Feeling Abnormal (516)more >>


PATIENT REVIEWS / RATINGS / COMMENTS

Based on a total of 44 ratings/reviews, Chantix has an overall score of 6.84. The effectiveness score is 8.68 and the side effect score is 6.05. The scores are on ten point scale: 10 - best, 1 - worst. Below are selected reviews: the highest, the median and the lowest rated.
 

Chantix review by 51 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   SMOKING CESSATION
Dosage & duration:   1 MILLIGRAM (dosage frequency: twice a day) for the period of 4 MONTHS
Other conditions:   NONE
Other drugs taken:   NONE
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   ALLOWED ME TO QUIT SMOKING WITHOUT THE PHYSICAL WITHDRAWL
Side effects:   OCCASSIONAL NAUSA SHORTLY AFTER TAKING, OCCASSIONAL GAS, SLEEPING DIFFICULTY
Comments:   1 TABLET IN THE AM ONE IN PM

 

Chantix review by 25 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Quit Smoking
Dosage & duration:   1 mg taken twice a day for the period of 2 weeks
Other conditions:   None
Other drugs taken:   None
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I quit smoking!!!! And so did my husband who was also taking it. I smoked about 1 pack a day and he smoked about 2 packs a day. Our lives have changed because of this drug and our children will be healthier too!
Side effects:   Severe nausea and drowsiness. After the pill in the morining I would get extremely nauseous and sleepy.
Comments:   I couldn't even keep my head up at work because I was so drowsy. I would have to go lay down in the break room. It got so bad I had to quit taking it. But I decided since it had been 2 weeks smoke free I wouldn't start again just because I couldn't handle the pills. My husband and I have been smoke free for 1 year 2 months!

 

Chantix review by 25 year old male patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Marginally Effective
Side effects:   Extremely Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Smoking Cessation
Dosage & duration:   1mg taken 2 times a day for the period of 12 weeks
Other conditions:   past history of depression, PTSD
Other drugs taken:   alcohol, caffeine, marijuanna
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   helped somewhat in minimizing the cravings and anxiety while taking it but still required substantial will power to quit. Considering the absolute hell I went through to quit I will probably never go back to smoking.
Side effects:   acute nausea, mental fog, vivid dreams, poor sleep quality, sore eyes, constipation, uncontrollable flatulence, euphoria, turned to dark depression, Psychosis NOS, Major Depressive Disorder, Suicidal ideation, self detrimental behaviour, emotional lability, agression, rage, panic attacks, hallucination, Somatoform Disorder, Delusional Parasitosis, Cholinaergic Prurritus, Hyperacusis, Severe sleep depervation; excessive dreaming, inability to sleep deeply, feeling half awake while sleeping, waking up with sore eyes., Brain Fog, lowered inhibitions, hair roots hurting, excessive hair loss, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, puffy bags under eyes, excessive weight gain, gingivitis, prostate pain, inability to feel orgasm, decreased ability to maintain and achieve erections, anhedonia.
Comments:   I took Champix in March of '08 and I am still suffering from most of the side effects of this poisonous drug. I started to feel some of the bad effects (nausea, mental fog, trouble sleeping, sore eyes, constipation, gas) of Champix while taking it but I was determined to quit smoking. For the first month I felt exceptionally good and I was telling everyone how great it was but the euphoria came crashing down and I went into a deep depression. I was able to make it through the full 3 month course but when I stopped taking it is when I really got messed up. I developed Psychosis NOS, Major Depressive Disorder, suicidal, Emotional instability, aggression, rage, panic attacks, hallucination, Somatoform Disorder, Delusional Parasitosis (bug crawling sensations all over my body), Hyperacusis (sensitivity to certain frequencies of sound causing severe pain and pressure in my ears), Severe Insomnia, Memory Loss, Brain Fog, Lowered Inhibitions, Hair was constantly hurting all of the time and lost lots of it (27 year old male), Irritable Bowel Syndrome (started as extreme constipation and gas, fatigue, Severe Eye pain, unsightly puffy bags under eyes, excessive weight gain, gingivitis, prostate pain, black out and become out of control when drinking, decreased sexual pleasure and ability to maintain erections. I think that is everything!!! I went to the psych ward recently due to being suicidal and at a breaking point with my symptoms and I was treated like scum and given brain damaging neuroleptic (anti-psychotic) drugs against my will. I have made some small improvements since taking Champix but it looks like the nightmare will never truly end. If you are one of the many that gets burned by this medication be warned that the doctors will probably not be able to help you and will most likely deny that anything is even happening to you or that it is related to Champix and the side effects may be permanent. I had a similar reaction in respect to rage and disinhibition from taking Zoloft when I was younger which altered my life substantially and now Champix has put the nail in the coffin. Apparently these two drugs have a similar mechanism but Pfizer with held this information and marketed the drug in a deceiving way not mentioning any of the neuro-psychiatric and mind altering side effects of the drug when it first hit the market in order to boost sales of their poison. The medical community has know for quite some time that dopamine plays a role in mood regulation and the fact the Champix targets the “pleasure centre” of the brain makes them grossly negligent for not investigating this further and informing consumers. Many people including myself (I turned down a prescription of Zyban due to my experience with Zoloft) would not have taken it if we would have been informed of the risks and Pfizer knew that. SHAME ON THEM FOR RUINING MY LIFE AND MANY OTHERS INCLUDING THOSE WHOM ENDED THE MISERY BY TAKING THEIR OWN LIFE. YOU'VE BEEN WARNED

See all Chantix reviews / ratings >>

Page last updated: 2014-07-18

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