Changes in the smoking behaviour, knowledge and opinion of medical students, 1972-1981.
ABSTRACT To examine changes in medical students' smoking behaviour, knowledge and opinion over the last decade, a survey first conducted at the University of Manchester Medical School in 1972 was repeated in 1981. A postal questionnaire was sent to 1163 students, of whom 1112 (96%) replied. A substantial decline in cigarette smoking among medical students has occurred. This largely follows trends in the general population, medical education itself having made little contribution to the change. In 1972, 29% of students were cigarette smokers compared with 17% in 1981. The fall in cigarette smoking was more marked among men students rather than women, older rather than younger students, clinical rather than pre-clinical students. Cigarette consumption had also decreased as had the use of cigars and pipes among male students. The decline was already evident prior to students beginning their medical studies. A smaller expansion of smoking experience at medical school had occurred among the 1981 students, but, as in 1972, those who took up smoking or increased their consumption exceeded those who gave up or cut down. In 1981 the likelihood of taking up smoking or becoming a regular smoker at medical school was somewhat greater for women students than for men, although the numbers concerned were small. The survey reconfirmed the importance of the social environment in smoking behaviour. Modest changes had occurred in knowledge and opinion about smoking. Both the accuracy and scope of knowledge of students about the health hazards increased between 1972 and 1981, particularly among clinical students, who remained considerably better informed than their pre-clinical colleagues. As in 1972, knowledge had little impact on smoking behaviour. By 1981 nine out of ten students regarded smoking as a major risk to health, both clinical students and smokers being more likely to take this view than in 1972. Almost all students, irrespective of their smoking behaviour, found the evidence linking smoking to serious illness to some extent convincing, and by 1981 a somewhat greater proportion, 60%, found it very convincing, the tendency to do so increasing as they progressed through their course.
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ABSTRACT: Diseases associated with smoking are a foremost cause of premature death in the world, both in developed and developing countries. Eliminating smoking can do more to improve health and prolong life than any other measure in the field of preventive medicine. Today's medical students will play a prominent role in future efforts to prevent and control tobacco use. A cross-sectional, self-administered, anonymous survey of fifth-year medical students in Berlin, Germany was conducted in November 2007. The study explored the prevalence of smoking among medical students. We assessed their current knowledge regarding tobacco dependence and the effectiveness of smoking cessation methods. Students' perceived competence to counsel smokers and promote smoking cessation treatments was also explored. Analyses were based on responses from 258 students (86.6% response rate). One quarter of the medical students surveyed were current smokers. The smoking rate was 22.1% among women, 32.4% among men. Students underestimated smoking-related mortality and the negative effect of smoking on longevity. A considerable number of subjects erroneously assumed that nicotine causes coronary artery disease. Students' overall knowledge of the effectiveness of smoking cessation methods was inadequate. Only one third of the students indicated that they felt qualified to counsel patients about tobacco dependence. This study reveals serious deficiencies in knowledge and counseling skills among medical students in our sample. The curriculum of every medical school should include a tobacco module. Thus, by providing comprehensive training in nicotine dependence interventions to medical students, smokers will have access to the professional expertise they need to quit smoking.Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology 01/2010; 5:9.
- BMJ Clinical Research 08/1996; 313(7048):48-9. · 14.09 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A cross-sectional survey, using an anonymous self-administered questionnaire, was conducted among 364 medical and engineering students in their first and later years of study. The study compared knowledge, attitudes towards smoking, and smoking practices between the faculties and between the years. The prevalence of current smoking was 24.1%. It was similar in each faculty and in every year, despite greater knowledge on the adverse health effects of smoking among students in the higher years in the faculty of medicine. Greater knowledge of the risks of smoking is not sufficient to bring about a reduction in smoking habits.Medical Education 04/1989; 23(2):196-200. · 3.55 Impact Factor