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MARTINEZ, Jorge Arturo et al. Social factors associated with the daily cigarette smoking among middle-school student adolescents in Bucaramanga, Colombia. Biomédica [online]. 2005, vol.25, n.4, pp.518-526. ISSN 0120-4157.

Introduction. Daily cigarette smoking is associated with high morbidity and mortality in adults. This pattern of tobacco use is established during the early adolescence. Among adolescents, daily cigarette smoking is a strong predictor of illegal, addictive substance use. The prevalence of daily cigarette smoking is not known in Colombian adolescent middle-school students. Objective. To assess smoking prevalence, daily cigarette smoking and associated factors among middle school-students in Bucaramanga, northeast Colombia. Materials and methods. An anonymous questionnaire concerning illegal and legal substance use was administered to a random sample of 2,586 students. Results. The group mean age was 13.0 years; 54.9% was male; 32.0% was in sixth grade, 31.7% in seventh, 25.2% in eighth and 11.1% in ninth grade, with 67.1% enrolled in public schools. The prevalence of daily cigarette smoking lasting the month prior to the questionnaire was 3.8% (95%CI 2.7-4.9). Logistic regression showed a significant association between being the best friend of a smoker or a drinker of alcohol (OR=3.71; 95%CI 1.71-8.04), having low academic performance perception (OR=3.83; 95%CI 1.0-14.2), and being older age (OR=1.4; 95%CI 1.2-1.8). Conclusions. These data demonstrated that one in 26 middle-school student adolescents from Bucaramanga is an everyday smoker. The most important associated factor was being the best friend of a smoker or a drinker of alcohol.

Keywords : smoking; epidemiology; prevalence, adolescent; students; public health.

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