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Nicotine Dependence

Naomi Breslau, PhD
JAMA. 1994;271(8):585-586. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510320025016.
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To the Editor.  —In their review of addiction medicine, Drs Franklin and Frances1 highlight recent research on nicotine addiction. Clearly, information on why people smoke is needed if public health efforts to improve the health of the nation are to succeed. Several studies are cited, among them, our prospective study on the association between nicotine dependence and major depression in young adults.2 In the JAMA review, the association between nicotine dependence and major depression in women is emphasized. However, the association we observed was in both women and men. We reported a more than twofold risk for major depression in persons with a history of nicotine dependence (odds ratio, 2.45; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.17 to 5.15), and because there was not a sex difference, we did not present sex-specific findings. To prevent any misunderstanding on this point, we summarize here our findings in women and men separately.

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