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Title: Incidence and prevalence of smoking amongst local medical students
Authors: Pizzuto, Matthew
Caruana Montaldo, Brendan
Muscat, Tamara
Seychell, Matthew
Keywords: Medical students -- Tobacco use -- Malta
Smoking -- Malta -- Statistics
Tobacco use -- Malta
Issue Date: 2020-08
Publisher: University of Malta. Medical School
Citation: Pizzuto, M., Caruana Montaldo, B., Muscat, T., & Seychell, M. (2020). Incidence and prevalence of smoking amongst local medical students. Malta Medical School Gazette, 4(1), 69-82.
Abstract: Background: Smoking is a detrimental addiction associated with various diseases. Locally, 20.2% of females and 29.7% of males are smokers. --- Method: 761 questionnaires were distributed to all medical students via electronic communication. The questionnaire enquired about demographics, clinical year level and cigarette smoking habits. --- Results: 61.1% of questionnaires were received and were balanced between all clinical years. Overall, 68.5% were non-smokers, 10.8% active smokers, 16% social smokers, 3.7% ex-smokers and 1% vapers. Amongst active smokers, 67% smoked 0-5cigarettes daily. The majority of social smokers also smoke 0-5. 63.3% of students admitted to unsuccessfully quitting smoking. Ex-smokers stated that health, hypocrisy and sports were important reasons for them quitting smoking. In the non-smoking cohort, health and odour ranked highly as reasons for never having started smoking. Students who vaped admitted to doing so multiple times daily. Although stress and coping mechanisms were chief reasons why students smoke, long term smoking increases anxiety and stress. Doctors who smoke are less likely to encourage their patients to quit smoking. Trends throughout the clinical years for both females and males were sought but no pattern emerged. A significant portion of students who are social smokers; most smoke 0-5cigarettes (97.3%). This study was also compared to a similar unpublished study done in 2008 and similar figures were found. --- Conclusion: Smoking is still common. Counselling should be offered on campus, more emphasis should be placed during the medical student years on the deleterious effects of tobacco and further banning along the hospital grounds should be implemented.
Appears in Collections:MMSG, Volume 4, Issue 1
MMSG, Volume 4, Issue 1
Scholarly Works - FacM&SMed

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