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The researchers point to a higher prevalence of anxiety and depression in women, which might interfere with even the best intentions to kick the habit. And one expert noted that prior evidence has shown that women's brains react differently to nicotine. In the latest study, involving more than 200 patients at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, the prevalence of anxiety or depression was 41 percent in women while it was only 21 percent in men.

Depression and other mood disorders need to be addressed in women who smoke, especially those with heart disease and stroke, said senior study author Dr. Beth Abramson [...]