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Reasons for Using Heated Tobacco Products among South Korean Adults
J Korean Soc Res Nicotine Tob 2021; 12(2): 53-63
Published online December 15, 2021
© 2021 The Korean Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco.

Ji Min Kim, Hong-Jun Cho*

Department of Family Medicine, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
Correspondence to: 議고솉以
슱궛븰援 쓽怨쇰븰 꽌슱븘궛蹂묒썝 媛젙쓽븰怨
E-mail: hjcho@amc.seoul.kr
ORDID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5358-6549
Received August 13, 2021; Revised October 14, 2021; Accepted October 19, 2021.
This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, dis-tribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
 Abstract
Background: This study assessed the reasons for using heated tobacco products (HTPs) among South Korean adults according to demographic and socioeconomic factors.
Methods: An online panel survey was conducted from November 3 to 9, 2018, including 7,000 adults (4,700 females, 2,300 males) from 70,000 age-, sex-, and provincial-distributionmatched individuals, based on the 2018 national population statistics. Females were oversampled because their tobacco use prevalence was low. The reasons for using HTPs were investigated and ranked according to age, sex, education level, monthly income, and current HTP usage status. Descriptive statistics were then presented as unweighted numbers and weighted percentages.
Results: Of the 7,000 participants, 944 (16.8%) were ever HTP users. The most common reasons for using HTPs among ever HTP users were as follows: “no ash is formed (74.8%)” and “it has less odor than conventional cigarettes (71.9%).” Current HTP users responded with higher percentages for all the reasons, compared to former HTP users. HTP having “less odor than conventional cigarettes” was the most important reason for younger smokers (20-34 years old) compared with those of other age groups. No significant differences were observed in the order of reasons for HTP use between males and females. People with higher education used HTPs to “reduce conventional cigarette use” (41.4% vs. 30.9%), and people with higher income (over monthly income of 7000K won) used HTPs as it produced “less odor than conventional cigarettes” (77.2%).
Conclusion: In South Korea, the most important reason for HTP use among current HTP users is the absence of ash and odor.
Keywords : Heat not burn tobacco products; Socioeconomic factors; Republic of Korea
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