Prevalence and predictors of smoking in Pakistan: results of the National Health Survey of Pakistan

Eur J Cardiovasc Prev Rehabil. 2005 Jun;12(3):203-8. doi: 10.1097/S1741-82670312303-1.


Objective: We analysed data collected during a nationwide cross-sectional household survey to estimate the prevalence of and identify factors associated with smoking in Pakistan.

Design: Population-based, cross-sectional survey [National Health Survey of Pakistan (NHSP) 1990-1994].

Methods: A population-based survey was carried out in Pakistan during 1990-1994. A nationally representative sample of 18,135 individuals aged 6 months and older was surveyed. We restricted this analysis to individuals aged 15 years or older (n=9442). The main outcome measure was self-reported smoking. Smokers were defined as individuals who reported current smoking and having smoked at least 100 cigarettes or 'beddies' during their lifetime.

Results: Overall prevalence of smoking was 15.2% [95% confidence interval (CI), 14.5-15.9%]. It was 28.6% (27.3-29.9%) among men and 3.4% (2.9-3.9%) among women. The highest prevalence was reported in men aged 40-49 years (40.9%). The independent predictors of smoking identified in the multivariate logistic regression analysis included age, male gender, ethnicity and illiteracy.

Conclusions: One out of every two to three middle-aged men in Pakistan smoke cigarettes. Our findings suggest that ethnically sensitive smoking control programmes that include measures for improving literacy rates are needed in Pakistan.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pakistan / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Sex Factors
  • Smoking / epidemiology*
  • Smoking Cessation