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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(3), 305; doi:10.3390/ijerph14030305

The Relation between Frequency of E-Cigarette Use and Frequency and Intensity of Cigarette Smoking among South Korean Adolescents

1
Department of Family Medicine, ASAN Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul 05505, Korea
2
National Evidence-Based Healthcare Collaborating Agency, Seoul 100705, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 27 October 2016 / Revised: 28 February 2017 / Accepted: 10 March 2017 / Published: 14 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Global Health)
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Abstract

Introduction: The prevalence of adolescent electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use has increased in most countries. This study aims to determine the relation between the frequency of e-cigarette use and the frequency and intensity of cigarette smoking. Additionally, the study evaluates the association between the reasons for e-cigarette use and the frequency of its use. Materials and Methods: Using the 2015 Korean Youth Risk Behavior Web-Based Survey, we included 6655 adolescents with an experience of e-cigarette use who were middle and high school students aged 13–18 years. We compared smoking experience, the frequency and intensity of cigarette smoking, and the relation between the reasons for e-cigarette uses and the frequency of e-cigarette use. Results: The prevalence of e-cigarette ever and current (past 30 days) users were 10.1% and 3.9%, respectively. Of the ever users, approximately 60% used e-cigarettes not within 1 month. On the other hand, 8.1% used e-cigarettes daily. The frequent and intensive cigarette smoking was associated with frequent e-cigarette uses. The percentage of frequent e-cigarette users (≥10 days/month) was 3.5% in adolescents who did not smoke within a month, but 28.7% among daily smokers. Additionally, it was 9.1% in smokers who smoked less than 1 cigarette/month, but 55.1% in smokers who smoked ≥20 cigarettes/day. The most common reason for e-cigarette use was curiosity (22.9%), followed by the belief that they are less harmful than conventional cigarettes (18.9%), the desire to quit smoking (13.1%), and the capacity for indoor use (10.7%). Curiosity was the most common reason among less frequent e-cigarette users; however, the desire to quit smoking and the capacity for indoor use were the most common reasons among more frequent users. Conclusions: Results showed a positive relation between frequency or intensity of conventional cigarette smoking and the frequency of e-cigarette use among Korean adolescents, and frequency of e-cigarette use differed according to the reason for the use of e-cigarettes. View Full-Text
Keywords: electronic cigarette; e-cigarette; smoking; adolescent; frequency; tobacco electronic cigarette; e-cigarette; smoking; adolescent; frequency; tobacco
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Lee, J.A.; Lee, S.; Cho, H.-J. The Relation between Frequency of E-Cigarette Use and Frequency and Intensity of Cigarette Smoking among South Korean Adolescents. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 305.

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