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Social patterning of smoking during pregnancy - evaluating the need for targeted interventions.

Principal investigator
Maria Quigley (NPEU)
Kate Fitzpatrick (NPEU)
Smoking or vaping in pregnancy
Start year
End year
NPEU Contact
Maria Quigley



According to the 2005 Infant Feeding Survey, nearly a third of mothers in England smoked in the 12 months before or during pregnancy.Although nearly half (49%) gave up before the birth, 30% were smoking again less than a year after giving birth.A range of interventions and services are available to help people give up smoking, but only a small number of women take up the offer of help during pregnancy or after childbirth.The attitude of a pregnant woman’s family, including her partner, towards smoking can have an effect on her smoking behaviour, if they smoke.While individual risk factors for smoking in pregnancy such as young maternal age and lower socio-economic status are well known, less is known about the role of other factors, such as the smoking status of the family, and how these different factors inter-relate to affect a woman’s chance of smoking cessation or relapse.The objectives are to identify what combination of social factors drive the ‘smoking profile’ of pregnant women in the UK.In particular, what factors are associated with smoking in pregnancy, smoking cessation in pregnancy and with relapsing either during pregnancy or postnatally.The factors to be considered are socio-economic, smoking status of family & friends and pregnancy & delivery related factors.


Secondary analysis of the UK Infant Feeding Survey for 2010. Owing to the complexity of smoking patterns in the pregnancy and postnatal period, we will use latent class analysis to identify distinct patterns and the factors associated with these patterns.