Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



School of Dentistry



Committee Chair

Gian Pietro Schincaglia

Committee Member

Arif Salman Abdul Shakore

Committee Member

Susan K Morgan



Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of death in the United States. Currently, the prevalence of tobacco use is 20.7% in adults (≥18 years old) and 31.2% among high school students. According to various studies, over 60% of Americans want to quit tobacco, but it takes a person several attempts to quit before they are successful. There is limited data in the literature that discusses the effectiveness of tobacco cessation programs in US dental schools. Therefore, information on the effectiveness of a tobacco cessation program in a dental school setting could benefit this state and the problem of tobacco use.


This was a retrospective study including electronic charts from patients who were under care at the West Virginia University School of Dentistry clinic from 2009 – 2019. Tobacco users’ charts were gathered by running a query on the electronic health record software. Demographics, clinical data, and tobacco cessation data were collected and analyzed.


518 charts were analyzed in this retrospective study, with 262 female and 256 male patients. The ages ranged from 18-95 years old, with the average age at 67.7 years old. Pack years ranged from 1-22,500 with an average of 62 pack years. Cigarette users made up the largest proportion of users, followed by smokeless tobacco, and then cigar users; however, the average pack years was in opposite order. Eighty percent (79.9%) of tobacco users had previously attempted tobacco cessation prior to care at the dental clinic. Tobacco cessation was found to be 8.8% overall (in all patients), and 26.6% in patients who attempted cessation in the dental clinic. Cold turkey was the most utilized method in successful cessation patients. Statistical analysis revealed variables of interest in cessation, previous attempts, and number of previous attempts to be statistically significant for patients to attempt cessation in the dental clinic.


Tobacco cessation in the WVU dental clinic was above the reported national average. Furthermore, dental care providers are a great resource for aiding in tobacco cessation. Interest in cessation, previous attempts of cessation, and number of previous attempts are significant for those to attempt cessation in the dental clinic. Future analysis of this data is recommended.

FINAL ETD sheet.pdf (6660 kB)
ETD signature sheet