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Drug Alcohol Depend. 2007 Jan 12;86(2-3):106-14. Epub 2006 Jul 11.

The association between cigarette smoking and DSM-IV nicotine dependence among first year college students.

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Wesleyan University, Psychology Department, 207 High Street, Middletown, CT 06459, USA.



This study was undertaken to evaluate the association between cigarette smoking behavior and DSM-IV nicotine dependence.


Drawing on a sample of first year college students selected for representation across a continuum of smoking behavior, current DSM-IV nicotine dependence criteria were assessed among participants reporting any smoking in the preceding week on a web-based survey protocol. Logistic regression and receiver operator characteristic analyses were used to estimate the overall concordance between smoking and DSM-IV nicotine dependence.


Relationships were supported between both quantity and frequency of smoking in the past week and DSM-IV nicotine dependence showing higher prevalence of dependence at higher levels of use (p<0.05). While the highest prevalence of nicotine dependence was seen among those reporting the most frequent and heavy smoking, a substantial number of participants reporting daily and/or heavy smoking did not meet criteria for nicotine dependence. Conversely, nicotine dependence was seen among a subgroup of participants reporting relatively low levels of non-daily smoking. Diagnostic concordance was found to be moderate for both quantity and frequency and was not improved by combining information from these two indices.


Aside from confirming DSM-IV nicotine dependence at relatively low levels of smoking, these results may be used to inform research aimed at identifying samples of nicotine dependent youth across the range of smoking levels.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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