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Motivation to Quit Smoking among Relatives of Lung Cancer Patients


Karen M. Butler, College of Nursing, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40536. E-mail:


ABSTRACT Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the factors related to motivation to quit among smoking family members of lung cancer patients.

Design and Sample: Relatives of multidisciplinary lung cancer clinic patients were recruited during family members' treatment. Participants (N=29) were primarily female and Caucasian.

Measures: The items assessed included the effect of their relative's disease on motivation to quit, intent to quit in the next 6 months, stage of change, perceived risk from smoking, and attitudes about being approached about cessation.

Results: Most indicated that their relative's disease had increased motivation to quit smoking (71%); 72% planned to quit within 6 months. One fourth (28%) were in precontemplation stage of change; 65% in contemplation; and 7% in preparation. The average perceived risk of developing lung cancer was 6.3. Two thirds were glad or very glad that someone had talked with them about quitting; 91% thought it was somewhat or very appropriate to talk about cessation with family members of lung cancer patients. Motivation to quit smoking was positively correlated with stage of change and perceived lung cancer risk.

Conclusions: Public health nurses who interact with families of lung cancer patients may be able to promote cessation in an at-risk group that is motivated to quit smoking.

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