Research

The prevalence of smoking and the knowledge of smoking hazards and smoking cessation strategies among HIV- positive patients in Johannesburg, South Africa

Peter Waweru, Ronald Anderson, Helen Steel, W D Francois Venter, David Murdoch, Charles Feldman

Abstract


Background. While the detrimental effects of smoking among HIV-positive patients have been well documented, there is a paucity of data regarding cigarette smoking prevalence among these patients in South Africa (SA).

Objectives. To establish the frequency, demographics, knowledge of harmful effects, and knowledge of smoking cessation strategies among HIV-positive patients in Johannesburg, SA.

Methods. We conducted a prospective cross-sectional survey using a structured questionnaire to interview HIV-positive patients attending the HIV Clinic at the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital between 1 July and 31 October 2011.

Results. Of 207 HIV-positive patients attending an antiretroviral therapy (ART) roll-out clinic, 31 (15%) were current smokers (23.2% of males and 7.4% of females) and a further 45 (21.7%) were ex-smokers. Most of the current smokers (30/31 patients) indicated their wish to quit smoking, and among the group as a whole, most patients were aware of the general (82.1%) and HIV-related (77.8%) risks of smoking and of methods for quitting smoking. Despite this, however, most (62.3%) were not aware of who they could approach for assistance and advice.

Conclusions. Given the relatively high prevalence of current and ex-smokers among HIV-positive patients, there is a need for the introduction of smoking-cessation strategies and assistance at ART roll-out clinics in SA. 


Authors' affiliations

Peter Waweru, Aga Khan University Hospital, Nairobi, Kenya

Ronald Anderson, South African Medical Research Council Unit for Inflammation and Immunity, Department of Immunology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, South Africa

Helen Steel, South African Medical Research Council Unit for Inflammation and Immunity, Department of Immunology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, South Africa

W D Francois Venter, Wits Reproductive Health and HIV Institute and Department of Internal Medicine, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

David Murdoch, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina, USA

Charles Feldman, Division of Pulmonology, Department of Internal Medicine, Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital and Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

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Keywords

HIV infection; smoking; cotinine; cessation strategies

Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2013;103(11):858-860. DOI:10.7196/SAMJ.7388

Article History

Date submitted: 2013-08-20
Date published: 2013-09-30

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