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Champix® (varenicline tartrate) Prescribing Information.  Adverse event reporting information can be found at the bottom of the page.

Champix Efficacy vs NRT

Results of multiple treatment comparison meta-analysis for CHAMPIX
​​​​​​​compared with NRT using indirect and direct comparisons.

  • CHAMPIX showed statistically significant improvements in smoking abstinence at ~4 weeks, 3 months and 12 months vs:1
    • standard-dose (≤22 mg) NRT patch, (also at 6 months)
    • high-dose (>22 mg) NRT patch
    • NRT patch plus another NRT formulation
  • Statistical significance in smoking abstinence over time.3

†Another NRT formulation included gum, lozenge, inhaler and nasal spray.
Data presented as Odds Ratios only as pairwise results for all comparisons not available.

OR = Odds Ratio; Crl = 95% Credible Interval (The Bayesian equivalent of classic Confidence Interval).
RCT = Randomised controlled trials
Adapted from Mills EJ et al. (2012). A systematic review and multiple treatment comparison (MTC) meta-analysis of open-label and blinded randomised controlled trials (RCTs) assessed the efficacy of different smoking cessation treatments at licensed doses. The review looked at 146 RCTs with at least 3 months follow-up post-quit date, [65 of standard-doses of the nicotine patch (≤22 mg); 6 of high-dose NRT patch (>22 mg); 5 of high- vs. standard-dose NRT patch; 5 of NRT patch plus another formulation vs. inert controls; 6 of NRT patch plus another formulation vs. single NRT patch; 48 of bupropion; and 11 of CHAMPIX]. The review focused on biochemically confirmed smoking abstinence reported at approximately 4 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months post-target quit date. Continuous abstinence rate (CAR) was preferred over point prevalence abstinence when both smoking abstinence outcomes were reported in the same study. Other NRT formulations included gum, lozenge, inhaler and nasal spray. Data analysis consisted of two stages. First, a pairwise meta-analysis was used to pool the RCT results for the head-to-head treatment combinations. Second, a Bayesian multiple treatment comparison meta-analysis was conducted which encompassed both indirect and direct treatment comparisons.1

The MTC approach makes assumptions that trials pooled in the analysis measure a similar outcome, that the findings from the direct and indirect evidence are not importantly different, and the study populations are appropriate to combine.

  • The only RCT (open-label) with head-to-head comparison of 12 weeks of CHAMPIX vs. 10 weeks of NRT patch (NiQuitin CQ® Clear) demonstrated a statistically significant difference in favour of CHAMPIX at 3 months, but significance was not achieved at 6 or 12 months.3

Read about how CHAMPIX compares to NiQuitin CQ® Clear

CHAMPIX helps more patients quit successfully at 12 weeks vs. NRT patch (NiQuitin CQ® Clear) in an open-label study.3

Open-label study comparing 12 weeks of CHAMPIX with 10 weeks of nicotine transdermal patches (NiQuitin CQ® Clear).3

Almost half the patients have made a previous attempt to quit using NRT.3

Adapted from Aubin H-J et al. [2008]. An open label, randomised, multi-centre clinical trial of 746 patients that smoked directly compared the recommended treatment courses of CHAMPIX for 12 weeks with the NRT patch (NiQuitin CQ® Clear) for 10 weeks. The primary endpoint was the continuous abstinence rate (CO-confirmed) at weeks 9–12 for CHAMPIX and at weeks 8–11 for NRT. A secondary endpoint was the continuous abstinence rate (CO-confirmed) at weeks 9–52 for CHAMPIX and at weeks 8–52 for NRT. Almost half the patients had made a previous attempt to quit using NRT.
Motivational influences are likely to exist in a real-world setting and the outcomes of this study show that CHAMPIX is more effective than transdermal nicotine in enhancing quit rates in an open-label setting.3

  • At 1 year, the quit rate for CHAMPIX was 26.1% vs. 20.3% for NRT patch (NiQuitin CQ® Clear) (OR=1.40; 95%CI: 0.99–1.99; p=0.056).3
  • Compared with NRT patch (NiQuitin CQ® Clear), during weeks 1–7, CHAMPIX significantly reduced:3
    • smoking satisfaction
    • cravings
    • withdrawal symptoms

Read about CHAMPIX warnings and precautions.

1. Mills EJ et al. Comparisons of high-dose and combination nicotine replacement therapy, varenicline, and bupropion for smoking cessation: A systematic review and multiple treatment meta-analysis. Ann Med 2012; 44:588-597.
2. Supplementary material for Mills EJ et al. Comparisons of high dose and combination nicotine replacement therapy, varenicline and bupropion for smoking cessation: A systematic review and multiple treatment meta-analysis. Ann Med 2012; 44:588-597.
3. Aubin H-J et al. Varenicline versus transdermal nicotine patch for smoking cessation: results from a randomised, open-label trial. Thorax 2008; 63:717-724.​​​​​​​

PP-CHM-GBR-3361. June 2021

Support material for Champix patients

Download support material for patients prescribed Champix.


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Learn more about how using Very Brief Advice (VBA) and Brief Support and Treatment (BST) can help a smoker gain the motivation and support needed, to quit successfully.

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