Effectiveness of digital tools for smoking cessation in Asian countries: a systematic review

Khang Wen Goh, Long Chiau Ming, Yaser Mohammed Al-Worafi, Ching Siang Tan, Andi Hermansyah, Inayat Ur Rehman, Zahid Ali

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Aim: The use of tobacco is responsible for many preventable diseases and deaths worldwide. Digital interventions have greatly improved patient health and clinical care and have proven to be effective for quitting smoking in the general population due to their flexibility and potential for personalization. However, there is limited evidence on the effectiveness of digital interventions for smoking cessation in Asian countries. Methods: Three major databases–Web of Science (WOS), Scopus, and PubMed–for relevant studies published between 1 January 2010 and 12 February 2023 were searched for studies evaluating the effectiveness of digital intervention for smoking cessation in Asian countries. Results: A total of 25 studies of varying designs were eligible for this study collectively involving a total of n = 22,005 participants from 9 countries. Among different digital tools for smoking cessation, the highest abstinence rate (70%) was reported with cognitive behavioural theory (CBT)-based smoking cessation intervention via Facebook followed by smartphone app (60%), WhatsApp (59.9%), and Pharmacist counselling with Quit US smartphone app (58.4%). However, WhatsApp was preferred over Facebook intervention due to lower rates of relapse. WeChat was responsible for 15.6% and 41.8% 7-day point prevalence abstinence. For telephone/text messaging abstinence rate ranged from 8-44.3% and quit rates from 6.3% to 16.8%. Whereas, no significant impact of media/multimedia messages and web-based learning on smoking cessation was observed in this study. Conclusion: Based on the study findings the use of digital tools can be considered an alternative and cost-effective smoking cessation intervention as compared to traditional smoking cessation interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2271942
JournalAnnals of Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2024


  • Cognitive behavioural theory
  • Human and health
  • Medicine
  • Public health
  • Tobacco addiction
  • Tobacco control
  • Tobacco use


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