University of Rochester

Researchers to Study Smokers' Health

November 24, 1999

Researchers at the University of Rochester and ViaHealth are beginning a study to assess health-related concerns and behaviors of individuals who smoke. The research is funded by a four-year, $2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Dr. Geoffrey Williams, the study's principal investigator and a physician at The Genesee Hospital, is collaborating with University of Rochester professors Edward Deci and Richard Ryan to understand more about how smokers view their health.

The study will include 1,400 individuals who smoke and follow them for 18 months. "We want to know more about how people think about smoking and their diet, and whether and how they decide to make health-related changes," said Williams, an assistant professor at the University's School of Medicine and Dentistry. Participants must be at least 18 years of age, smoke at least five cigarettes a day, and have given some thought to quitting smoking.

Williams, Deci and Ryan have collaborated on other projects that investigate human behavior and health. This latest study will be based at the University's Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology on the River Campus.

Study participants will be recruited from a variety of sources, including hospitals and doctors' offices, and through workplace newsletters. Participants will meet with project staff to provide information about their smoking and diet, and will be contacted a few times over the following 18 months to explore their feelings and choices about their health-related behavior.

The project is currently enrolling participants for the study. For more information, call the Smokers' Health Study at (585) 922-7670.