Background: There is little information about smokers who tried potentially reduced exposure products (PREPs) (Eclipse®, Omni®, Advance Lights®, Accord®, or Ariva®), why they tried them, if they liked these products, and if they will continue to use them.
Objectives: The objectives of this qualitative study were to understand: (1) how smokers who tried PREPs learned about them, (2) reasons for first trying PREPs, (3) which PREP(s) they tried, (4) what they thought of the product at first trial, (5) reasons for continuing or discontinuing use, and (6) whether they would recommend PREPs to others.
Design: In October 2002, 16 focus group sessions were conducted with current cigarette smokers aged 30–50 years: eight groups in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and eight in Dallas, Texas. Specific focus groups were composed of white men, white women, African American men, African American women, Hispanic men, or Hispanic women.
Results: The majority of the participants learned about PREPs through advertising or promotion, family, friends, and co-workers; major reasons given for first trying PREPs were that the products were free or inexpensive, they wanted to stop smoking, they believed the product claims of fewer health risks, or they were curious; most of them tried Eclipse® probably because the focus groups were conducted in the same cities where Eclipse® was introduced; most participants did not like PREPs; most discontinued the use of PREPS, some who continued to use them did so infrequently and also kept smoking their regular brands of cigarettes; and most would not recommend PREPs, although a few might recommend them to specific groups (for example, new smokers, the young, women, curious or health conscious people).
Conclusions: Although most established smokers did not like the PREPs they tried and will not recommend them to anyone, a minority of established smokers believe that there may be a market for these products.
- potentially reduced-exposure products
- focus groups
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↵* The use of trade names is for informational purposes only and in no way implies endorsement by the US Government, the US Department of Health and Human Services, or the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Competing interests: none declared
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