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AIDS Patient Care STDS. 2002 Jan;16(1):39-42.

Cigarette smoking and the desire to quit among individuals living with HIV.

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Department of Health Science, San Jose State University, San Jose, California, USA.


Among individuals living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), studies have found that smokers are at greater risk than nonsmokers to develop bacterial pneumonia, oral lesions and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) dementia complex. Information is lacking regarding the prevalence of cigarette smoking among people living with HIV or about their intentions to quit smoking. A survey was conducted with a sample of patients attending an HIV outpatient clinic at San Francisco General Hospital to assess the prevalence of cigarette smoking and the level of interest in quitting. In total, 228 assessments were completed. Study results revealed a high percentage of smokers among our sample of individuals living with HIV compared to the percentage of smokers found in the general adult population. A total of 123 individuals (54%) reported that they smoked cigarettes. Men were more than twice as likely to have made previous attempts at smoking cessation than were woman. The majority of cigarette smokers (63%) reported that they were currently thinking about quitting. Respondents' preferences for types of smoking cessation methods are discussed, and recommendations are proposed for identifying and treating tobacco dependence in this population.

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