While cigarette smoking has declined among the U.S. general population, sale and use of non-cigarette alternative tobacco products (ATP; e.g., e-cigarettes, cigars) and dual use of cigarettes/ATPs are rising. Little is known about ATP use patterns in cancer survivors enrolled in clinical trials. We investigated prevalence of tobacco product use, and factors associated with past 30-day use, among patients with cancer in national trials.


Cancer survivors (N = 756) enrolled in 9 ECOG-ACRIN clinical trials (2017–2021) completed a modified Cancer Patient Tobacco Use Questionnaire (C-TUQ) which assessed baseline cigarette and ATP use since cancer diagnosis and in the past 30 days.


Patients were on average 59 years old, 70% male, and the mean time since cancer diagnosis was 26 months. Since diagnosis, cigarettes (21%) were the most common tobacco product used, followed by smokeless tobacco use (5%), cigars (4%), and e-cigarettes (2%). In the past 30 days, 12% of patients reported smoking cigarettes, 4% cigars, 4% using smokeless tobacco, and 2% e-cigarettes. Since cancer diagnosis, 5.5% of the sample reported multiple tobacco product use, and 3.0% reported multiple product use in the past 30 days. Males (vs. females; OR 4.33; P = 0 < 0.01) and individuals not living with another person who smokes (vs. living with; OR, 8.07; P = 0 < 0.01) were more likely to use ATPs only versus cigarettes only in the past 30 days.


Among patients with cancer, cigarettes were the most prevalent tobacco product reported.


Regardless, ATPs and multiple tobacco product use should be routinely assessed in cancer care settings.

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