American Journal of Preventive Medicine Supplement

"Best Practices, Research, and Relationships:
Oklahoma's Investment in Tobacco Control"


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Journals: Youth Tobacco Use Dropped between 2000 and 2011

Tobacco use and cigarette smoking fell among middle and high school students between 2000 and 2011, according to data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey, a school-based, self-administered questionnaire given to students in grades 6 through 12. Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published the findings last month in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Percentage of U.S. Middle and High School Students Using Tobacco
  Middle School Students High School Students
2000 2011 2000 2011
Current Tobacco Use 14.9 7.1 34.4 23.2
Current Smoked Tobacco Use 14.0 6.3 33.1 21.0
Current Cigarette Use 10.7 4.3 27.9 15.8

Current Research Publications

Oklahoma Indoor Air Quality Study, Heather Basara, PhD, OU Norman, PI

Click Here for preliminary report .

A study released today by the Oklahoma Tobacco Research Center (OTRC) of the OU Cancer Institute shows that concentrations of secondhand tobacco smoke pollution breathed in smoking rooms of restaurants and in bars were exceptionally high and hazardous to health.

Tobacco smoke levels were evaluated based on measurements of very fine suspended particulates in the air, particles smaller than 2.5 microns, which come primarily from tobacco smoke.

 “One readily understandable way to evaluate the health implications of elevated levels of secondhand tobacco smoke is to apply the particulate health hazard scale for outdoor air, developed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),” stated Dr. Heather Basara, an industrial hygienist and lead investigator in the research.

“Based on the EPA scale, the average particulate level measured in restaurant smoking rooms is beyond the hazardous extreme, and the level found in bars is even worse,” Dr. Basara said.

Levels averaged 380 µg/m3 (micrograms per cubic meter of air) in the restaurant smoking rooms tested, and 655 µg/m3 in the bars. Restaurants with no smoking averaged just 26 µg/m3.

The EPA scale ranks outdoor levels of particulate pollution as ‘unhealthy’ at 66-150, ‘very unhealthy’ at 151-250, and ‘hazardous’ at higher concentrations such as found on average in the Oklahoma restaurant smoking rooms and bars tested for this report.

Dr. Robert McCaffree, Co-Director of OTRC, added “Secondhand smoke exposure is a serious health hazard, accounting for approximately 700 deaths annually in Oklahoma, mostly from heart disease---including heart attacks---and lung cancer. Even brief exposures are harmful. Because this exposure is readily preventable, business owners and public policy makers would be well-advised to act as soon as possible to assure smokefree environments for all public places and all indoor workplaces.”

Particulates were monitored using a TSI Sidepak AM510 Personal Aerosol Monitor. Sixty-second average readings  for at least 30 minutes were recorded in 67 indoor locations in central Oklahoma, following nationally-recognized protocols established by the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, New York.  Time weighted averages were calculated for each of the locations. The full report is accessible at the OTRC Website,

Tobacco Control Monographs

The National Cancer Institute presents this 19th monograph in the Tobacco Control Monograph Series, The Role of the Media in Promoting and Reducing Tobacco Use. Monograph 19 provides a critical, scientific review and synthesis of the current evidence regarding the power of the media, both to encourage and to discourage tobacco use. It is the most current and comprehensive summary of the scientific literature on media communication in tobacco promotion and tobacco control. Research included in the review comes from the disciplines of marketing, psychology, communication, statistics, epidemiology, and public health. All are vital to understanding how exposure to the media influences tobacco use.