Longitudinal trajectories of E-cigarette use among adolescents: A 5-year, multiple cohort study of vaping with and without marijuana

Melissa B. Harrell, Baojiang Chen, Stephanie L. Clendennen, Aslesha Sumbe, Kathleen R. Case, Anna V. Wilkinson, Alexandra Loukas, Cheryl L. Perry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

E-cigarette use harms adolescent health, yet it continues to escalate rapidly among teens nationwide. This longitudinal study sought to identify and differentiate between developmental trajectories of past 30-day e-cigarette use with and without marijuana (i.e., liquid THC) across adolescence (11–19 years old). Three population-based cohorts of adolescents (n = 3907; N = 461,069) living in major metropolitan areas of Texas (Houston, Dallas-Ft. Worth, San Antonio, Austin) completed up to 9 Waves of an e-cigarette use survey, from 2014 to 2019. Growth curve models (GCMs) were used to identify average trajectories of past 30-day e-cigarette use, by cohort. Growth mixture models (GMMs) were used to investigate developmental patterns in these trajectories, by cohort. Sociodemographic differences in trajectories were also investigated. Stable trajectories of e-cigarette use with and without marijuana were identified, from 11 through 19 years of age. Trajectories varied by age of onset; frequency and escalation in use; and substance used. With one exception, all trajectories of e-cigarette use escalated with age. Moreover, age of onset and progression in use were positively related. The most problematic trajectories, corresponding to more frequent use, were observed among the younger cohorts compared to the oldest. Primary prevention is critical. Interventions to prevent the onset and progression in e-cigarette use among teens must begin early (e.g., in middle school) and be sustained throughout adolescence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number106670
JournalPreventive Medicine
Volume150
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2021

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • E-cigarette use
  • Marijuana use
  • Tobacco use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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