nicotine (generic name)

Habitrol (brand name)

The patches replace the nicotine found in cigarettes and help to decrease withdrawal effects
(NIK oh teen)
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What is this medicine?

NICOTINE (NIK oh teen) helps people stop smoking. The patches replace the nicotine found in cigarettes and help to decrease withdrawal effects. They are most effective when used in combination with a stop-smoking program.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • diabetes
  • heart disease, angina, irregular heartbeat or previous heart attack
  • lung disease, including asthma
  • overactive thyroid
  • pheochromocytoma
  • skin problems
  • stomach problems or ulcers
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to nicotine, adhesives, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

This medicine is for use on the skin. Follow the directions that come with the patches. Find an area of skin on your upper arm, chest, or back that is clean, dry, greaseless, undamaged and hairless. Wash hands with plain soap and water. Do not use anything that contains aloe, lanolin or glycerin as these may prevent the patch from sticking. Dry thoroughly. Remove the patch from the sealed pouch. Do not try to cut or trim the patch. Using your palm, press the patch firmly in place for 10 seconds to make sure that there is good contact with your skin. After applying the patch, wash your hands. Change the patch every day, keeping to a regular schedule. When you apply a new patch, use a new area of skin. Wait at least 1 week before using the same area again.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

If you forget to replace a patch, use it as soon as you can. Only use one patch at a time and do not leave on the skin for longer than directed. If a patch falls off, you can replace it, but keep to your schedule and remove the patch at the right time.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • medicines for asthma
  • medicines for blood pressure
  • medicines for mental depression

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Do not smoke, chew nicotine gum, or use snuff while you are using this medicine. This reduces the chance of a nicotine overdose.

You can keep the patch in place during swimming, bathing, and showering. If your patch falls off during these activities, replace it.

When you first apply the patch, your skin may itch or burn. This should soon go away. When you remove a patch, the skin may look red, but this should only last for a day. Call your doctor or health care professional if you get a permanent skin rash.

If you are a diabetic and you quit smoking, the effects of insulin may be increased and you may need to reduce your insulin dose. Check with your doctor or health care professional about how you should adjust your insulin dose.

If you are going to have a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) procedure, tell your MRI technician if you have this patch on your body. It must be removed before a MRI.

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Last Updated: February 21, 2012
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