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Impact of Flavors and Design Features on Patterns of Waterpipe Use and Toxicity in Pregnant Mothers

Principal Investigator: Laura Stroud and Lori Scott-Sheldon

Funding Mechanism: National Institutes of Health – Grant

ID number: 1R01DA042484-01

Award Date: 8/15/2016

Institution: Miriam Hospital


Studies have reported an association between waterpipe tobacco use during pregnancy and increased risks of infertility, obstetrical complications, low birth weight, and respiratory problems. Sweetened flavored waterpipe tobacco and novel design features have contributed to the growth in waterpipe use. However, data are lacking regarding rates and patterns of waterpipe tobacco use, the impact of flavors and design features on use patterns, and biomarkers of nicotine and toxicant exposure in pregnant women in the U.S. The goal of this prospective longitudinal study is to investigate the impact of flavors and design features on use patterns, dependence, and biomarkers of toxicant exposure in 100 pregnant current waterpipe users. Study participants will complete detailed interviews regarding (a) use, perceptions, and preferences for waterpipe flavors and design features, and (b) patterns of waterpipe and dual/poly waterpipe tobacco use and dependence at three assessment points (first and third trimesters, and three months postpartum). Design features will be investigated through personal photographs of waterpipes and waterpipe tobacco use (e.g., owned waterpipes, waterpipe smoking in bar settings) throughout pregnancy and postpartum. Urine, breath, and saliva samples will be collected to assess maternal/fetal exposure to nicotine, carbon monoxide, and state-of-the-art markers of volatile organic compounds. Participants will be provided with information about the health risks of waterpipe and other tobacco use following assessments

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