E-cigarette use is associated with subsequent cigarette use among young adult non-smokers, over and above a range of antecedent risk factors: a propensity score analysis

Marina Epstein, Jennifer A. Bailey, Rick Kosterman, Isaac C. Rhew, Madeline Furlong, Sabrina Oesterle, Sean Esteban McCabe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background and Aims: There is a public health concern that the use of e-cigarettes among non-smoking young adults could be associated with transition to combustible cigarette use. The current study is a quasi-experimental test of the relationship between e-cigarette use and subsequent combustible cigarette use among young adult non-smokers, accounting for a wide range of common risk factors. Design: Logistic regression was used to predict combustible cigarette use on three or more occasions at age 23 years based on age 21 e-cigarette use. Inverse probability weighting (IPW) was used to account for confounding variables. Setting: Data were drawn from the Community Youth Development Study (CYDS), a cohort study of youth recruited in 2003 in 24 rural communities in seven US. states. Participants: Youth in the CYDS study (n = 4407) were surveyed annually from ages 11 to 16, and at ages 18, 19, 21 and 23 years (in 2016). The sample was gender balanced (50% female) and ethnically diverse (20% Hispanic, 64% white, 3% black and 12% other race or ethnicity). The current study was limited to participants who had never used combustible cigarettes by age 21 (n = 1825). Measurements: Age 21 use of e-cigarettes and age 23 use of combustible cigarettes (three or more occasions) were included in the regression analysis. Age 11–19 measures of 22 common predictors of both e-cigarette and combustible cigarette use (e.g. pro-cigarette attitudes, peer smoking, family monitoring) were used to create IPWs. Findings: After applying IPW, e-cigarette use at age 21 was associated with a twofold increase in odds of combustible cigarette use on three or more occasions 2 years later (odds ratio = 2.16, confidence interval 1.23, 3.79). Conclusions: Among previously never-smoking US young adults, e-cigarette use appears to be strongly associated with subsequent combustible cigarette smoking, over and above measured preexisting risk factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1224-1232
Number of pages9
JournalAddiction
Volume116
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2021

Keywords

  • Addiction
  • combustible cigarettes
  • electronic cigarettes
  • propensity score analysis
  • risk factors for smoking
  • young adulthood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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