Knowledge of smoking as a risk factor for disease among urology clinic patients in Australia
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Smoking remains a common habit among the general population. Despite the well-established risks of smoking, relatively few studies have been undertaken to assess the understanding of these risks among the general population. We intended to assess the understanding of smoking as a risk factor for various conditions in a urology outpatient cohort to assess the level of knowledge as well as particular strengths and weaknesses they possess.
A four-page questionnaire was distributed among urology outpatients over a 5 month period. The questionnaire captured information regarding the knowledge of smoking as a risk factor for various urological and non-urological conditions. Results were collated and stratified according to patient’s cancer history as well as smoking status.
A total of 112 participants were included in our analytical sample. Our study demonstrated a deficiency in knowledge regarding smoking and urological conditions. When ranked by level of knowledge, four of the bottom five conditions were urological in nature. Furthermore, we found that patients with a personal cancer history demonstrated generally poorer knowledge of smoking as a risk factor compared to patients without a cancer history. Conversely, smokers themselves demonstrated a greater understanding of risks compared to non-smokers.
Our study suggests there is much work to be done in the education of patients on the risks of smoking from a urological point of view. We believe more initiative needs to be taken by the specialists treating such patients to achieve an improved level of knowledge.
KeywordsSmoking Smoking cessation
We would like to acknowledge the clerical staff at the Austin Health outpatient department for their assistance with distribution of the questionnaire.
MK: protocol development, data collection, data analysis, manuscript writing. NP: data analysis, manuscript writing, manuscript editing. TM: data collection, manuscript writing. TN: data collection. LS: data collection, manuscript writing. NL: protocol development, data analysis, manuscript editing.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
Research involving human participants and/or animals
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Participant entry into the study was voluntary and all participants were given written information outlining the nature and scope of the study as well as the publication intentions. No identifying details were collected in this study.
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