Background The present study aimed to examine the experience of actual electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use in smoke-free areas of restaurants and workplaces and to explore the determinants associated with such use among Japanese adults who reported any experience using e-cigarettes (e-cigarette ever-users).
Methods An Internet-based self-reported questionnaire survey was conducted in 2015 on Japanese e-cigarette ever-users. The proportion of the respondents who had ever used or frequently used e-cigarettes in smoke-free restaurants and/or workplaces was calculated. Potential factors associated with e-cigarette use in those smoke-free areas were also examined by using multivariable logistic regression analyses.
Results In total, 1243 e-cigarette ever-users (662 current and 581 former e-cigarette users) were analysed. The majority of them (1020/1243, 82.1%) were male and their mean age ± SD was 47.0±10.4 years. The proportion of those who had ever used e-cigarettes in smoke-free restaurants was 28.8% (358/1243) and that in smoke-free workplaces was 25.5% (317/1243), respectively. The proportion of those who had frequently used e-cigarettes in smoke-free restaurants was 18.5% (230/1243) and that in smoke-free workplaces was 16.3% (202/1243), respectively. In general, the proportion of e-cigarette use in those smoke-free areas was higher among those having a higher educational level than those having a lower educational level.
Conclusion Among adult Japanese e-cigarette ever-users, approximately 26%–29% had ever used and 16%–19% had frequently used e-cigarettes in restaurants and/or workplaces where combustible tobacco smoking is not allowed. Policy-makers may need to establish explicit rules as to e-cigarette use in smoke-free environments.
- electronic cigarette
- Internet survey
- smoke-free area
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KK and TT contributed equally.
Contributors Both authors conceptualised the study, wrote the manuscript and conducted the statistical analyses.
Funding This study was supported by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare: Comprehensive Research on Life-Style Related Diseases including Cardiovascular Diseases and Diabetes Mellitus (H25-010, H26-023 and H28-002).
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent The Internet panellists of Rakuten Research agreed to their participation in research surveys.
Ethics approval The Research Ethics Committee of the Osaka Medical Center for Cancer and Cardiovascular Diseases in 2014 (no 1412175183).
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.