Objective: A diagnosis of cancer within the family provides an opportunity for smokers to adopt a health-promoting behavior. This study examines the associations between having a first-degree family history of cancer and smoking status using population-based data with a large and diverse sample. Method: Cross-sectional data from the 2009 California Health Interview Survey on 47,331 adults were analyzed. Sample weights were applied to account for the survey design with results generalizable to non-institutionalized adults in California (27.4. million). Results: In 2009, 3.7. million (13.6%) adults were current-smokers, 6.3. million (23.0%) were former smokers and 17.4. million (63.4%) were never-smokers. Nine-million-six-hundred-thousand (35%) had a first-degree family history of cancer. Controlling for all covariates, first-degree family history of cancer was significantly associated with being a current smoker (OR. = 1.16; 95% CI. = 1.01-1.35) and to being a former smoker (OR. = 1.17; 95% CI. = 1.05-1.30). Conclusion: In California, although many adults with a first-degree family history of cancer quit smoking, a significant subset still smoke which places them at higher risk for poor health outcomes. This subset represents an important target population for smoking cessation interventions.
- Family cancer history
- Smoking cessation
- Smoking status
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health