Characteristics of Participants Enrolled in a Brief Motivational Enhancement for Smokers

Amy L. Copeland, Department of Psychology, Louisiana State University , Baton Rouge, LA , USA.


Daily smoking is associated with elevated blood pressure, carbon monoxide (CO) toxicity, and impaired pulmonary lung functioning. The benefits of successful smoking cessation are readily apparent, given the health improvements associated with cessation, as well as the reduction of secondhand smoke to which non-smoking coworkers and family members are exposed. Previous literature indicates that providing personalized information to smokers (versus general base rates) without engaging in confrontational pressure to quit smoking, leads to increased interest in quitting smoking and willingness to enter smoking cessation programs. The goal of this study was to examine the pretreatment characteristics of the smokers entering a brief motivational enhancement intervention based on personally tailored health feedback. Participants (N = 28) were 88.2% Caucasian and 59% males, and they were an average of 23 years of age. On average, they smoked 20.08 cigarettes per day for a mean of 6.6 years, a mean Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence score of 4.7, and obtained a mean breath CO reading of 19.1 ppm. Smoking-related adverse health outcomes were predictive of stages of change motivation to quit smoking. Implications for cessation programs are discussed.