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While long term health consequences of smoking as cancer, cardiovascular diseases, or pulmonary diseases have been largely analysed, short term health consequences of smoking have been poorly studied, as the case of teenage smokers who are short duration smokers. Some studies, mainly from the United States and northern European countries, have shown that more absence from school, poorer self perceived health, more frequent use of medication, and more frequent contact with health services are more prevalent among adolescent smokers.1,2 However, in southern European countries this relation has been rarely assessed. The aim of this study was to examine the association between daily smoking among adolescents and their self perceived health, different health problems, use of medication, and use of health services.
Data were gathered from three similar designed Spanish National Health Interview Surveys representative of the general non-institutionalised population of Spain that were conducted in 1993, 1995, and 1997 by the Spanish Ministry of Health. We pooled the data to obtain an adequate sample size. The study sample was set up by 2261 adolescents aged 16–18 years who had complete information on smoking (1215 boys and 1046 girls, only two adolescents were not included because of missing information). Adolescents were classified as daily smokers (adolescents who declare smoking at least one cigarette daily at the time of interview), …
Funding: this work was partially funded by the Fondo de Investigación Sanitaria (FIS) (contract no 00/0695) and Instituo de Salud Carlos III (Network for Research in Epidemiology and Public Health, RCESP, C03/09).
Conflicts of interest: none declared.