Do I have to already be diagnosed with MCI in order to participate?  No, though there must be memory concerns which are noticed by another person.  Memory testing will be done at the screening visit to determine study eligibility.

Can I smoke and participate in this study?          Participants must be non-smokers and may not have used any products containing nicotine in the past year.

Is it possible to become “addicted” to the patch?   In our previous research study of non-smokers with MCI using the patch, no one experienced withdrawal symptoms after stopping use of the patch and no one became addicted and thus there appears to be no risk of dependency or addiction.

Does the nicotine patch have side effects?  All medications can cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor side effects, when using the patch.  The most common side effects are nausea, dizziness, and headaches-similar to what a person would experience when smoking a cigarette for the first time. These symptoms, if they occur at all, may most likely go away. Some who use the nicotine patch also experienced mild weight loss.  An important part of the screening process is to review your medical history and current medications to determine whether you are at low risk for side effects. 

If I don’t have a memory problem now, will wearing a nicotine patch keep me from having one?  The positive results of our previous MCI/nicotine study should not be viewed as an endorsement of nicotine for individuals without memory problems.  At this point we know, from the previous study, that short-term use of the patch produced some improvement in those already experiencing mild memory loss, but treatment with the nicotine patch has not yet been studied as a prevention method in healthy individuals.

What are the responsibilities of my study partner?  Since the partner you selected to participate in the study knows you well and spends a good amount of time with you, they are likely to notice any changes in your memory that may occur during the study.  Their main purpose is to give the research staff feedback about your memory. At each visit you and your study partner will be interviewed regarding your mental and physical health.

Who do I contact if I want to participate?  If you are interested in participating, go to the Find a Location tab to find the site nearest you.  Please check the page periodically as we will be adding additional sites throughout the year.