The Epidemiology of Tobacco Use

Dr. Erika Trapl uses a classical epidemiological approach to study what is both a health and social issue: the use of cigars, cigarillos, and little cigars (CCLC) by adolescents and young adults. Using quantitative data from the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) and qualitative data of from youth and young adults, she aims to understand the characteristics, correlates, and associated risk factors of CCLC users in a local context.

Cigar_map

Youth tobacco use and sales outlets in Cleveland, Ohio

The result of this research is a deeper understanding of the why, where, and how of CCLC use among young adults that can inform interventions at all levels. Dr. Trapl has provided invited testimony to Cleveland City Council regarding adolescent use of CCLC products, including flavored tobacco, and the location of retail outlets selling CCLC in relation to Cleveland public schools. Her research was instrumental in the passage of legislation banning the sale of tobacco products to anyone under age 21 in the city of Cleveland.

Dr. Trapl was the 2016 recipient of the Ohio Public Health Association’s Public Health Policy Award.