Taylor AH, Thompson TP, Ussher M, Aveyard P, Murray RL, Harris T, Creanor S, Green C, Streeter A, Chynoweth J, Ingram W, Greaves CJ, Hancocks H, Snowsill TM & Callaghan L (2020) A randomised controlled trial of tailored support to increase physical activity and reduce smoking in smokers not immediately ready to quit: Protocol for the Trial of physical Activity assisted Reduction of Smoking (TARS) study. BMJ Open.
Introduction: Smoking reduction can lead to increased success in quitting. This study aims to determine if a client-focused motivational support package for smoking reduction (and quitting) and increasing (or otherwise using) physical activity (PA) can help smokers who do not wish to quit immediately to reduce the amount they smoke, and ultimately quit. This paper reports the study design and methods.
Methods & analysis: A pragmatic, multi-centred, parallel, two group, randomised controlled superiority clinical trial, with embedded process evaluation and economics evaluation. Participants who wished to reduce smoking with no immediate plans to quit were randomised 1:1 to receive either (i) tailored individual health trainer face-to-face and/or telephone support to reduce smoking and increase PA as an aid to smoking reduction (intervention) or (ii) brief written/electronic advice to reduce or quit smoking (control). Participants in both arms of the trial were also signposted to usual local support for smoking reduction and quitting. The primary outcome measure is 6 month carbon monoxide confirmed floating prolonged abstinence following participant self-reported quitting on a mailed questionnaire at 3 and 9 month post-baseline. Participants confirmed as abstinent at 9 months will be followed up at 15 months.
Ethics and dissemination: Approved by SW Bristol NHS Research Committee (17/SW/0223). Dissemination will include publication of findings for the stated outcomes, parallel process evaluation and economic evaluation in peer reviewed journals. Results will be disseminated to trial participants and health care providers.
Output Status: Forthcoming
Additional co-authors: L Price, J Horrell, J King, A Gude, M George, C Wahlich, L Hamilton, K Cheema, S Campbell, D Preece