Preventing tobacco use among young people in India: Project MYTRI

Am J Public Health. 2009 May;99(5):899-906. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2008.145433. Epub 2009 Mar 19.


Objectives: We assessed the effectiveness of a 2-year multicomponent, school-based intervention designed to reduce tobacco use rates among adolescents in an urban area of India.

Methods: Students from 32 schools in Delhi and Chennai, India, were recruited and randomly assigned to an intervention or control group. Baseline, intermediate, and outcome data were collected from 2 cohorts of 6th- and 8th-grade students in 2004; 14,063 students took part in the study and completed a survey in 2004, 2005, or 2006. The intervention consisted of behavioral classroom curricula, school posters, a parental involvement component, and peer-led activism. The main outcome measures were self-reported use of cigarettes, bidis (small hand-rolled, often flavored, cigarettes), and chewing tobacco and future intentions to smoke or use chewing tobacco.

Results: Findings showed that students in the intervention group were significantly less likely than were students in the control group to exhibit increases in cigarette smoking or bidi smoking over the 2-year study period. They were also less likely to intend to smoke or chew tobacco in the future.

Conclusions: School-based programs similar to the intervention examined here should be considered as part of a multistrategy approach to reducing tobacco use among young people in India.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Female
  • Health Promotion / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • India / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Program Development
  • Program Evaluation
  • Regression Analysis
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / epidemiology*
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / prevention & control