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Original Article

Majmaah J Heal Sci. 2019; 7(3): 62-69

Electronic Cigarettes Use Among Medical Students: Prevalence, Social Determinants and Purpose of Use

Abdulaziz T. Alshomrani, Abdulaziz S. Almalki, Bandar A. Aldosari, Naif S. Alnefaie, Hala M. Alzaid, Nasser A. Alshamrani, Khalid I. Alqumaizi.

Background: Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are new form of nicotine products that has become a worldwide trend. Not enough data about its prevalence, determinants and reason for use among medical college students are available. Our aim in this study was to estimate the prevalence, social correlates and purpose of use of e-cigarettes among medical students in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Methods: A well-structured paper and electronic questionnaire distributed among 900 students of two government and one private medical college.

Results: A total of 636 out of 900 targeted students (71%) answered the questionnaire (female represent 33.3%). The prevalence of tobacco and e-cigarettes use among the participants was 20.7% and 3.3%, respectively, while 5.7% reported a previous trial of e-cigarette. E-cigarette smoking is more prevalent among males than female and is associated with more travel abroad. Most of the e-cigarette’s smokers (88.1%) used it with other tobacco products and showed positive correlation with other tobacco products especially the water pipe and conventional cigarettes. Only 36% of e-cigarette smokers used them on a daily basis. Among e-cigarette users, 43% used it for fun and exploration, 26.4% to quit conventional smoking, 13.9% to minimize harm from other products, and 9% used it in places in which other types of smoking were prohibited.

Conclusion: The prevalence of e-cigarettes among college students is like national and Western World community figures. Raising awareness of its potential harm and medical consequences through curricular and extracurricular activities is of paramount importance for students’ and their future patients’ health.

Key words: e-cigarettes, medical students, medical college, Saudi Arabia

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