Prevalence and correlates of cigarette smoking among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Vancouver, Canada: A cross-sectional survey
Laura Haley, Jason Wong, David Moore, Keith Chan, Warren Michelow, Meena Dawar, Wayne Robert, Robert S. Hogg, Mark Gilbert , the ManCount Study Team
Objectives: Past studies of men who have sex with men (MSM) in Canada and elsewhere have reported high prevalence of cigarette smoking. In the context of a declining prevalence of smoking in the general population, we sought to gather more recent estimates of the prevalence of smoking among a sample of MSM in Vancouver and examine correlates of current smoking status. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional survey of MSM selected through a venue-based time-place sampling method in Vancouver. Correlates of smoking were investigated using bivariate analyses and multivariate logistic regression modeling. We also examined the association between smoking status and use of mood-altering substances. Results: A total of 37.0% (413/1115) of study participants were current smokers. HIVpositive individuals (50.0%), men under 30 years old (40.4%), and individuals earning < $20,000 per year (51.6%) reported the highest prevalence of smoking. Asian men had a much lower prevalence of smoking (20.5%) (p < 0.001 for all). Multivariate modeling found a reduced odds of smoking among individuals of Asian heritage and increased odds of smoking among individuals aged <45 years; income levels below $60,000, self-reported HIV seropositivity and self-reported sexual orientation other than gay. Conclusion: The prevalence of current smoking among MSM in this sample was 37.0% which is lower than previous studies of MSM in Canada, but still much higher than of the general male population in British Columbia. Men’s health programs which are directed towards gay, bisexual and other MSM should prioritize smoking cessation programs, particularly for young men and those living with HIV.