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NAQC Newsroom: Research

Online Tobacco Marketing and Subsequent Tobacco Use.

Thursday, February 8, 2018  
Posted by: Natalia Gromov
Samir Soneji, JaeWon Yang, Kristin E. Knutzen, Meghan Bridgid Moran, Andy S.L. Tan, James Sargent, Kelvin Choi
Online Tobacco Marketing and Subsequent Tobacco Use.
Pediatrics. February 2018, VOLUME 141 / ISSUE 2.
Nearly 2.9 million US adolescents engaged with online tobacco marketing in 2013 to 2014. We assess whether engagement is a risk factor for tobacco use initiation, increased frequency of use, progression to poly-product use, and cessation. We analyzed data from 11 996 adolescents sampled in the nationally representative, longitudinal Population Assessment for Tobacco and Health study. At baseline (2013–2014), we ascertained respondents’ engagement with online tobacco marketing. At follow-up (2014–2015), we determined if respondents had initiated tobacco use, increased frequency of use, progressed to poly-product use, or quit. Accounting for known risk factors, we fit a multivariable logistic regression model among never-users who engaged at baseline to predict initiation at follow-up. We fit similar models to predict increased frequency of use, progression to poly-product use, and cessation. Compared with adolescents who did not engage, those who engaged reported higher incidences of initiation (19.5% vs 11.9%), increased frequency of use (10.3% vs 4.4%), and progression to poly-product use (5.8% vs 2.4%), and lower incidence of cessation at follow-up (16.1% vs 21.5%). Accounting for other risk factors, engagement was positively associated with initiation (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 1.26; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.01–1.57), increased frequency of use (aOR = 1.58; 95% CI: 1.24–2.00), progression to poly-product use (aOR = 1.70; 95% CI: 1.20–2.43), and negatively associated with cessation (aOR = 0.71; 95% CI: 0.50–1.00). Engagement with online tobacco marketing represents a risk factor for adolescent tobacco use. FDA marketing regulation and cooperation of social-networking sites could limit engagement.

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