Development of a tobacco cessation intervention for Alaska Native youth

Christi A. Patten, Oluwole Fadahunsi, Marcelo Hanza, Christina M. Smith, Christine A. Hughes, Tabetha A. Brockman, Rahnia Boyer, Paul A. Decker, Elizabeth Luger, Pamela S. Sinicrope, Kenneth P. Offord

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Tobacco cessation treatments have not been evaluated among Alaska Native (AN) adolescents. This pilot study evaluated the feasibility and acceptability of a targeted cessation intervention developed for AN youth. Intervention components were informed by prior focus groups assessing treatment preferences among AN youth, a social cognitive theoretical framework and feedback obtained from a teen advisory group. The intervention consisted of a weekend program where youth traveled by small airplane from their villages to stay overnight with other adolescents who quit tobacco use together. The program included recreational activities, talking circles, personal stories from elders and teen advisors, and cognitive behavioral counseling. Two intervention pilots were conducted from October 2010 to January 2011 using a non-randomized, uncontrolled study design with assessments at baseline and six-week follow-up. One village in Western Alaska was selected for each pilot with a targeted enrollment of 10 adolescents each. Participants were recruited for each pilot within five days, but recruitment challenges and "lessons learned" are described. The first pilot enrolled nine adolescents (all female) aged 13-16 years; all nine attended the intervention program and 78% (7/9) completed follow-up. The second pilot enrolled 12 adolescents (eight females, four males) aged 12-17 years, of which seven attended the intervention program. Six of these seven participants (86%) completed follow-up. In both pilots, participants rated the intervention as highly acceptable. A targeted cessation intervention was feasible and acceptable to AN youth. The intervention will be tested for efficacy in a subsequent randomized controlled trial.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)273-284
Number of pages12
JournalAddiction Research and Theory
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2013


  • Adolescents
  • Alaska Natives
  • Tobacco
  • Tobacco cessation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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