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The association between use of snus and quit rates for smoking: results from seven Norwegian cross-sectional studies
Article first published online: 30 SEP 2010
© 2010 The Authors, Addiction © 2010 Society for the Study of Addiction
Volume 106, Issue 1, pages 162–167, January 2011
How to Cite
Lund, K. E., Scheffels, J. and McNeill, A. (2011), The association between use of snus and quit rates for smoking: results from seven Norwegian cross-sectional studies. Addiction, 106: 162–167. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2010.03122.x
- Issue published online: 10 DEC 2010
- Article first published online: 30 SEP 2010
- Submitted 15 April 2010; initial review completed 27 May 2010; final version accepted 25 June 2010
- Former smoking;
- harm reduction;
- public health;
- quit rates;
- smokeless tobacco;
- smoking cessation;
Aim Swedish studies have shown that experience of using snus is associated with an increased probability of being a former smoker. We examined whether this result is also found in Norway.
Design Seven cross-sectional data sets collected during the period 2003–08.
Participants A total of 10 441 ever (current or former) smokers
Measurements Quit ratios for smoking were compared for people with different histories of snus use. Motive for snus use was examined among combination users (snus and cigarettes). Smoking status was examined among snus users.
Findings Compared to smokers with no experience of using snus, the quit ratio for smoking was significantly higher for daily snus users in six of seven data sets, significantly higher for former snus users in two of five data sets and significantly lower for occasional snus users in six of seven data sets. Of combination users who used snus daily, 55.3% [confidence interval (CI) 44.7–65.9] reported that their motive for using snus was to quit smoking totally. This motive was reported significantly less often by combination users who used snus occasionally (35.7%, CI 27.3–44.2). Former smokers made up the largest proportion of daily snus users in six of seven data sets. In the remaining data set, that included only the age group 16–20 years, people who had never smoked made up the largest segment of snus users.
Conclusions Consistent with Swedish studies, Norwegian data shows that experience of using snus is associated with an increased probability of being a former smoker. In Scandinavia, snus may play a role in quitting smoking but other explanations, such as greater motivation to stop in snus users, cannot be ruled out.