Quit attempts and quit rates among menthol and nonmenthol smokers in the United States

David T. Levy, Kenneth Blackman, John Tauras, Frank J. Chaloupka, Andrea C. Villanti, Raymond S. Niaura, Donna M. Vallone, David B. Abrams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: We compared quit attempts and quit rates among menthol and nonmenthol cigarette smokers in the United States. Methods: We used data from the 2003 and 2006-2007 waves of the large, nationally representative Tobacco Use Supplement to the Current Population Survey with control for state-level tobacco control spending, prices, and smokefree air laws. We estimated mean prevalence, quit rates, and multivariate logistic regression equations by using self-respondent weights for menthol and nonmenthol smokers. Results: In 2003 and 2007, 70% of smokers smoked nonmenthol cigarettes, 26% smoked menthol cigarettes, and 4% had no preference. Quit attempts were 4.3% higher in 2003 and 8.8% higher in 2007 among menthol than nonmenthol smokers. The likelihood of quitting was 3.5% lower for quitting in the past year and 6% lower for quitting in the past 5 years in menthol compared with nonmenthol smokers. Quit success in the past 5 years was further eroded among menthol-smoking Blacks and young adults. Conclusions: Menthol smokers are more likely to make quit attempts, but are less successful at staying quit. The creation of menthol preference through marketing may reduce quit success.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1241-1247
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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