International Symposium in Singapore Discusses Concurrent Use of Khat and Tobaco
A team from the KRP participated in an international symposium titled Concurrent Use of Tobacco and Other Substances: A Costly Challenge to Prevention and Cessation Efforts. The symposium was presented within the 15th World Conference on Tobacco or Health (WCTOH) 20-24 March 2012. The WCTOH was geld in Singapore. The symposium was chaired by Professor Mustafa al’Absi and included presentations from scientists in U.S.A., Spain, UK, Yemen, and Sri Lanka.
Related to khat Dr. Motohiro Nakajima from the University of Minnesota presented recent results from the KRP program about the gender differences in patterns of tobacco and tobacco use. The presentation highlighted the unique nature of the patterns of tobacco use among women in Yemen and among those who also chew khat. Professor al’Absi also presented data from a collaborative project with colleagues in Yemen and focused on increased health and psychological burden of concurrent khat and tobacco use.
Research Finds Gender Differences in Patterns of Concurrent Use of Tobacco and Khat
New research published by the KRP team showed distinct patterns of khat and tobacco use among men and women in Yemen. The study, first of its kinds, compared Yemeni men and women on their patterns of khat and tobacco use and found that reported number of cigarettes smoked during a khat session was higher among men than among women, whereas frequency of waterpipe use during the session was greater among women than among men. Smoking status (daily or occasional) was positively associated with khat use in women only. One hopeful finding was that the majority of participants reported that they had thought about and have attempted to quit khat and tobacco use.
The research was published by the Nicotine & Tobacco Reseacrch published by Oxford University Press for the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT).
The abstract of this research is below.
Nicotine Tob Res. 2012 Nov 29. [Epub ahead of print]
Gender Differences in Patterns and Correlates of Khat and Tobacco Use.
University of Minnesota Medical School, Duluth.
Although research suggests gender differences in patterns of tobacco use, whether gender moderates concurrent use of tobacco and other substances remains unclear. In some parts of Africa and the Middle East, tobacco is often accompanied with khat (Catha edulis), a widely used substance in these regions. The concurrent use of tobacco and khat may represent a public health burden spreading to other countries in Europe and North America.
A total of 189 participants (69 women) khat users and smokers in Yemen were asked to complete questionnaires that focused on patterns of khat and tobacco use. Chi-square tests, analyses of variance, and correlational analyses were conducted.
Reported frequency and intensity of khat and tobacco use were greater among men than in women. Also, reported number of cigarettes smoked during a khat session was higher among men than among women, whereas frequency of waterpipe use during the session was greater among women than among men. Smoking status (daily or occasional) was positively associated with khat use in women only. Age of onset of khat use was inversely related to the number of cigarettes smoked during a khat session and with intensity of khat chewing. The majority of participants reported that they had thought about and have attempted to quit khat and tobacco use.
The results provide evidence for gender differences in patterns of concurrent use of tobacco and khat. Identifying determinants of tobacco and khat use may be useful in reducing the risk of their negative health outcomes.
- [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
KRP Research Investigates Way to Improve Assessment of Nicotine Dependence Among Khat Users
Researchers from the KRP published research focusing on the examining the psychometric properties of the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND) among tobacco smokers who use khat (Catha edulis). The research found that the factor structure and gender differences of data from this measure provide support for the validity of the scale. The research was published by the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs.
The abstract of this research is below.
J Psychoactive Drugs. 2012 Nov-Dec;44(5):437-41.
An examination of the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence among concurrent tobacco and khat users.
Khat Research Program (KRP), University of Minnesota 1035 University Drive, Duluth, MN 55812, USA.
The current study examined the psychometric properties of the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND) among tobacco smokers who use khat (Catha edulis), a widely used substance in East Africa and Arabian Peninsula. We also explored gender differences in response to FTND items because little attention has been paid to women's smoking behavior in Middle Eastern societies. A total of 103 (38 women) concurrent users (mean age +/- SD: 24.4 +/- 5.2) were recruited from two universities in Yemen. An Arabic version of FTND was developed using back-translation method. Chronbach's alpha was used to examine the reliability and principal component analysis was conducted to test the factor structure of the scale. The scale was found to have low internal consistency reliability (Chronbach's alpha = .58). Two factors were identified, accounting for 57% of the total variance. A series of chi-square analyses found that men indicated more symptoms associated with nicotine dependence than women (ps < .05). Although the poor reliability observed in the present sample argues for a cautious approach when assessing nicotine dependence among khat users, the findings on factor structure and gender differences may provide support for the validity of the scale. Taking into account sociocultural factors associated with patterns of smoking behavior among this population should improve the psychometric properties of FTND.
- [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
- [Available on 2013/11/1]