Document Type



Department of Medicine


Introduction: Tobacco smoking is a public health problem leading to substantial morbidity and mortality with around 80% of the deaths occurring in developing countries. Physician intervention has been shown to increase cessation rates. The study aims to assess knowledge, attitudes and practices of physicians in tobacco cessation treatment in Karachi Pakistan.

Methods: A descriptive cross sectional study was carried out between June to December 2013. All practicing physicians from Karachi were recruited. Survey questionnaire was distributed among randomly selected physicians after obtaining their consent. The study was approved by ethics review committee of The Aga Khan University Hospital.

Results: A total of 189 physicians were approached and 163 consented to take part. Around 58.3% of the physicians reported high levels of confidence for discussing tobacco cessation, 40.5% of them developing tobacco cessation plan and only 26.4% were confident in recommending pharmacological treatment. Regarding knowledge of pharmacotherapy on a five-point scale majority (45.4%) rated themselves four or five. However, very Low rates of correct answers were noted for objective knowledge assessment (5.5%). Most physicians (78.5%) reported that they identify every patient’s tobacco use status. Most physicians (61.4%) reported always or almost always advising tobacco users to quit.

Conclusion: Majority of the physicians believed in the importance of tobacco cessation treatment and understand their primary role. Most feel they have adequate knowledge regarding smoking cessation but lacked the skills required to implement tobacco cessation treatment strategies. Effective training is required to enhance physicians’ capacity to intervene in the field of tobacco cessation.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Journal of Health, Medicine and Nursing .

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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.