Patterns of smoking prevalence among the elderly in Europe

Alessandra Lugo, Carlo La Vecchia, Stefania Boccia, Bojana Murisic, Silvano Gallus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Scant information is available on determinants of smoking prevalence in the vulnerable population of the elderly, particularly in Europe. Therefore, we analyzed smoking patterns among older adults (≥65 years old), using data from a representative survey based on 3,071 elderly, conducted in 17 European countries in 2010, within the Pricing Policies And Control of Tobacco in Europe (PPACTE) project. Overall smoking prevalence in 17 European countries was 11.5% (15.3% in men and 8.6% in women). An inverse relation with level of education was observed among men, while no specific pattern was evident among women. Smoking prevalence was highest in eastern/central Europe for men (20.3%) and northern Europe for women (13.1%). In both sexes combined, smokers were more frequent in countries with low implementation of tobacco control activities (14.9%). Anti-tobacco campaigns and smoking cessation interventions specifically targeted to the elderly are urgently needed in Europe.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4418-4431
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 17 2013


  • Cross-sectional study
  • Elderly
  • Smoking prevalence
  • Vulnerable population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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