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Tobacco Use During and After Pregnancy: The Smoking Behaviors of African American Women and Their Attempts to Quit

Gilchrist, Kellie D. (2007) Tobacco Use During and After Pregnancy: The Smoking Behaviors of African American Women and Their Attempts to Quit. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Minorities suffer disproportionately from tobacco smoke-related morbidity and mortality nationwide. Tobacco-related illnesses are responsible for approximately 47,000 deaths of African Americans annually. Furthermore, greater tobacco- related health disparities exist among African American women in the state of Pennsylvania and the city of Pittsburgh; as the local and state maternal smoke rates exceed the national average. Additionally, low birth weight and infant mortality rates linked to maternal smoking has been disproportionately elevated among African American women in this geographical area. African American mothers who quit smoking generally have higher relapse rates than their Caucasian counterparts. Research limitations in understanding the smoking cessation, self- quitting and relapse prevention among African American women particularly in Pittsburgh, PA; serves as a foundation for this study. Thus, two focus groups were conducted with a sample of 13 African American maternal smokers in the Pittsburgh area to assess their smoking and quitting experiences as well as their unmet needs for cessation treatment. A brief survey was administered to ascertain the participants' socio demographic characteristics. The data collected mirror previous research as nicotine addiction, stress and poor social surroundings act as barriers to successful quitting. The women identified willpower as the key to permanent smoking cessation but lack the self-efficacy to quit. Recommendations for advanced investigations and cessation programs for this population are provided. The findings from this exploratory study are significant to public health research as they provide a guide for future research and offer valuable insight for modifying and creating effective smoking cessation interventions for African American women; which can produce long term effects by decreasing the maternal smoking rate disparity in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Gilchrist, Kellie; kgirly06@pitt.eduKDG21
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairAbatemarco, Diane Jdja17@pitt.eduDJA17
Committee CoChairFryer, Craig
Committee MemberCopeland, Valire Carrsswvcc@pitt.eduSSWVCC
Date: 27 September 2007
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 26 July 2007
Approval Date: 27 September 2007
Submission Date: 3 August 2007
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: African American women; cessation; cessation; post-partum; pregnancy; quitting; relapse; smoking
Other ID:, etd-08032007-203038
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:56
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:48


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