This study examines the current prevalence of cigarette smoking and the number of cigarettes smoked in a community-based sample of 1021 low-income African-American men and women.
Participants were selected using a two-stage, area probability sample design. Data were collected in 2002–2003 in face-to-face interviews and analyzed in 2005. All data and analyses were weighted to account for the complex sampling design.
Fifty-nine percent of men and 41% of women were current smokers, with younger individuals apparently initiating smoking at an earlier age than older individuals.
The high prevalence of cigarette use provides further evidence that the excess burden of tobacco-related disease among low-income African-American families may be on the rise. This is of great concern, and if confirmed by further research, indicates an urgent need for preventive intervention.