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Smoking treatment for substance abusing adolescents

Institution: University of California, San Diego
Investigator(s): Mark Myers, Ph.D.
Award Cycle: 1998 (Cycle 7) Grant #: 7RT-0135 Award: $431,607
Subject Area: Tobacco-Use Prevention and Cessation
Award Type: Research Project Awards

Initial Award Abstract
Approximately 80% of adolescents treated for alcohol and drug problems also smoke cigarettes. Available evidence suggests that smoking continues at high rates following adolescent substance abuse treatment. The high prevalence and persistence of smoking among substance abusing adolescents identifies these youth as being at high-risk for tobacco-related diseases, and, therefore, an important target for tobacco intervention. However, limited information exists regarding smoking among substance abusing youth. In particular, little is currently known about how to encourage and assist smoking cessation for substance abusing adolescents. Developing effective smoking treatments for this population is important in order to reduce the long-term health problems associated with tobacco use.

The main goal of the present project is to evaluate the effectiveness of a treatment designed to motivate substance abusing teens to cut down and quit cigarette smoking. This study will address 3 questions: 1) Do adolescents who receive a smoking intervention during treatment for substance abuse decrease smoking compared with those who do not? 2) Does smoking treatment have any effect on alcohol and drug use following substance abuse treatment? and 3) Will the smoking treatment have different effects for boys and girls? The proposed project is consistent with TRDRP goals of obtaining scientific information pertinent to the treatment of tobacco use and is consistent with the program emphasis on youth tobacco use.

This project is designed to evaluate a smoking treatment that has been developed over the past two years as part of a project funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and Children's Hospital of San Diego. The treatment is based on techniques found helpful for adult smoking cessation, and has been modified to take into account the special needs and circumstances of teens with alcohol and drug problems. The main goals of the treatment are to motivate adolescents to cut down on their smoking and try to quit. The treatment provides encouragement, advice and support to assist teens in accomplishing these goals.

A total of 112 adolescents in treatment for substance abuse will be recruited to participate in the project. Participating adolescents will be assigned to treatment (6 weekly meeting; delivered in a group format) or to a wait-list control condition. The wait-listed adolescents (who will be offered treatment following completion of the post-treatment interviews) will serve as a comparison group that will allow evaluation of whether the treatment is effective. All participants will be interviewed four times over an 8 month period. Teens will be asked to complete questionnaires and interviews regarding their tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use and also provide breath and saliva samples that will be used to test for nicotine use (to verify self-reported tobacco use).

Results from this project will: 1) demonstrate whether the smoking treatment succeeds in decreasing cigarette use; 2) show whether changes in cigarette smoking are related to alcohol and other drug use; and 3) provide initial information as to whether the treatment is equally effective for boys and girls. The proposed project is thus intended to provide important information for designing and implementing smoking cessation treatments for alcohol and other drug abusing adolescents.

A cigarette smoking intervention for substance abusing adolescents
Periodical: Cognitive and Behavioral Practice Index Medicus:
Authors: Myers MG, Brown SA, Kelly JF ART
Yr: 2000 Vol: 7 Nbr: Abs: Pg: 64-82

A smoking intervention for substance abusing adolescents: outcomes, predictors or cessation attempts, and post-treatment substance use
Periodical: Journal of Child and Adolescent Substance Abuse Index Medicus:
Authors: Myers MG, Brown SA, Kelly JF ART
Yr: 2000 Vol: 9 Nbr: Abs: Pg: 77-91

DSM-IV nicotine dependence among adolescent smokers
Periodical: Nicotine and Tobacco Research Index Medicus:
Authors: Cohen M, Kelly JF, Myers MG ART
Yr: 2000 Vol: 2 Nbr: Abs: Pg: 288

Assessment of nicotine dependence among substance abusing adolescent smokers: A comparison of the DSM-IV criteria and the modified fagerstrom tolerance questionnaire.
Periodical: Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment Index Medicus:
Authors: Cohen LM, Myers MG, and Kelly JF ART
Yr: 0 Vol: Nbr: Abs: Pg:

Social Anxiety, negative affectivity and substance use among high school students.
Periodical: Psychology of Addictive Behaviors Index Medicus:
Authors: Myers MG, Aarons GA, Tomlinson K, and Stein M ART
Yr: 0 Vol: Nbr: Abs: Pg:

Constructing a short form of the smoking consequences questionnaire with adolescents and young adults.
Periodical: Psychological Assessment Index Medicus:
Authors: Myers MG, McCarthy D, MacPherson L, and Brown SA ART
Yr: 0 Vol: Nbr: Abs: Pg: