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Clinician's Guide to Treating Tobacco Dependence

Respiratory therapists interact with many people in a variety of settings who may also use some sort of tobacco product. While the RT may be comfortable discussing other healthcare topics, the tobacco cessation discussion may be uncomfortable or difficult to initiate. This Clinician's Guide to Treating Tobacco Dependence provides RTs with the guidance necessary to understand the effects of nicotine, differentiate among tobacco products, discuss the addiction cycle, and initiate the tobacco cessation discussion with patients.

Successful completion of this course requires a score of 70% on the post-test.

This course includes a short introductory video and a PDF document that can be downloaded in the Resources section of the course or in the Papers tab within the viewer. The PDF document is the main content of the course and what you will be tested on in the quiz.

Approved for 3.00 CRCE Hours.


Describe the effects of nicotine on the human body, including cardiopulmonary and psychoactive effects.
Identify the effect of nicotine on weight and appetite.
Discuss the carcinogenic effects of nicotine.
Discuss the teratogenic effects of nicotine.
Identify the various nicotine delivery systems and the hazards of cigarettes, menthol, light cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, electronic cigarettes, hookah smoking, smokeless tobacco, and snus.
Define drug addiction and the neurochemistry of dependence.
Describe the chain of nicotine addiction.
Identify the eleven DSM 5 nicotine dependence criteria.
Define tolerance and withdrawal as it relates to nicotine dependence. Describe the intervention process by using the 5As, 5Rs, and the Condensed AAR models.
Discuss the stages of change in the context of willingness to quit as outlined by the transtheoretical model.
Define motivational interviewing.
Identify appropriate first-line pharmacotherapies for treating tobacco dependence in context with the patient’s need and co-morbid conditions.
Discuss the mechanism of action, indication(s), contraindication(s), and hazards of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), bupropion, and varenicline.
Identify special considerations for addressing tobacco dependence in the patient with cardiac complications.
Identify special considerations for addressing tobacco dependence in the pregnant patient.
Identify special considerations for addressing tobacco dependence in the hospitalized patient.
Define secondhand smoke and thirdhand smoke.
Identify special considerations for addressing tobacco dependence in teens and preteens.
Identify systems-level barriers to sustaining a tobacco dependence treatment program.
Discuss The Joint Commission’s (TJC) performance measures for the delivery of tobacco cessation to patients.
Identify the steps to implementing a tobacco cessation program.
Discuss reimbursement for tobacco cessation programs under Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B.


Clinician's Guide to Treating Tobacco Dependence

Speaker Information

Erna Boone DrPH, RRT, FAARC
Scott Cerreta BS, RRT
Crystal Dunlevy EdD, RRT
Robert Fluck MS, RRT, FAARC
Grace Howard BSRT, RRT
Kathryn Ickes BS, RRT, RPFT, AE-C
Gaylene Lee MEd, RRT, RRT-NPS, TTS
Mary Martinasek PhD, RRT, RRT-NPS, CPH, CHES, AE-C
Susan Rinaldo Gallo MEd, RRT, CTTS, FAARC
Courtney Seibert BS, RRT, RRT-NPS
Georgianna Sergakis PhD, RRT
Shawna Strickland PhD, RRT, RRT-ACCS, RRT-NPS, AE-C, FAARC
Jay Taylor RRT, CTTS
Sarah Varekojis PhD, RRT
Jonathan Waugh PhD, RRT, RPFT, CTTS, FAARC

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