Objectives: The purpose of this study was to examine print media coverage of cigars during the period 1987 to 1997.
Methods: A content analysis of 790 cigar-focused newspaper and magazine articles was conducted.
Results: Cigar-focused articles increased substantially over the study period, paralleling increased cigar consumption. Articles focused on cigar business (39%) and events (19%). Only 4% of articles focused on health effects. Sixty-two percent portrayed cigars favorably. The tobacco industry was mentioned in 54% of articles and portrayed positively in 78%. Forty-two percent of the individuals quoted or described in articles were affiliated with the tobacco industry; only 5% were government/public health figures.
Conclusions: Print coverage of cigars failed to communicate health risk messages and contributed to positive images of cigars.