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The relationship between posttraumatic stress disorder and smoking outcome expectancies among U.S. military veterans who served since September 11, 2001

Authors

  • Patrick S. Calhoun,

    Corresponding author
    1. VA Mid-Atlantic Region Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, VA Center for Health Services Research in Primary Care, Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and Duke University Medical Center
    Current affiliation:
    1. VA Mid-Atlantic Region Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, VA Center for Health Services Research in Primary Care, Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center
    • Durham VAMC, 116B, 508 Fulton Street, Durham, NC 27705
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  • Holly F. Levin,

    1. Duke University Medical Center
    Current affiliation:
    1. Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center
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  • Eric A. Dedert,

    1. Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center and Duke University Medical Center
    Current affiliation:
    1. Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center
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  • Yashika Johnson,

    1. Duke University Medical Center
    Current affiliation:
    1. Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center
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  • The VA Mid-Atlantic Mental Illness Research, Education, Clinical Center Registry Workgroup,

    1. The VA Mid-Atlantic Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center
    Current affiliation:
    1. VA Mid-Atlantic Region Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center
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  • Jean C. Beckham

    1. VA Mid-Atlantic Region Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and Duke University Medical Center
    Current affiliation:
    1. VA Mid-Atlantic Region Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center
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  • The VA Mid-Atlantic MIRECC workgroup for this publication includes Kimberly T. Green, Angela Kirby, H. Ryan Wagner, Kristy Straits-Troster, Christine E. Marx, Scott D. Moore, Raj A. Morey, Larry A. Tupler, Richard D. Weiner, John A. Fairbank from the Durham VA Medical Center; Marinell Miller-Mumford from the Hampton VA Medical Center; Antony Fernandez, Scott D. McDonald from the Richmond VA Medical Center; and Katherine H. Taber, Ruth E. Yoash-Gantz, from the Salisbury VA.

    This work was supported by the VA Mid-Atlantic Research, Education and Clinical Center and also the Office of Research and Development Clinical Science, Department of Veterans Affairs, and by K24DA016388, 2R01CA081595, R21DA019704 and 1R21CA128965. The views expressed in this presentation are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Department of Veterans Affairs or the National Institutes of Health.

Abstract

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with increased rates of smoking although little is known regarding the mechanisms underlying this relationship. The current study examined expectations about smoking outcomes among smokers with and without PTSD. The sample included 96 veterans (mean age of 34 years) and included 17% women and 50% racial minorities. Smoking expectancies were measured with the Smoking Consequences Questionnaire-Adult (Copeland, Brandon, & Quinn, 1995). Consistent with previous work suggesting that smokers with PTSD smoke in an effort to reduce negative affect, unadjusted analyses indicated that smokers with PTSD (n = 38) had higher expectations that smoking reduces negative affect than smokers without PTSD (d = 0.61). Smokers with PTSD also had increased expectancies associated with boredom reduction (d = 0.48), stimulation (d = 0.61), taste/sensorimotor manipulation aspects of smoking (d = 0.73), and social facilitation (d = 0.61). Results of hierarchical linear regression analyses indicated that PTSD symptom severity was uniquely associated with these expectancies beyond the effects of gender and nicotine dependence. More positive beliefs about the consequences of smoking may increase risk of continued smoking among those with PTSD who smoke. Further understanding of smoking expectancies in this group may help in developing interventions tailored for this vulnerable population.

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