Background: Epidemiological studies in smokers indicate a dose-response relationship between the number of cigarettes smoked per day and the risk of developing certain smoking related diseases. The alkaloid nicotine is the major pharmacologically active substance in tobacco.
Objective: To estimate the cotinine level excretion in urine among smoked and smokeless tobacco users and nonsmokers among the Indian population.
Materials and method: The study sample consisted of 250 subjects who were apparently healthy, asymptomatic and not using any drug. The study sample was divided into smoked tobacco users (bidi and cigarette), smokeless tobacco users, both smoked and smokeless tobacco users and controls (non-users of tobacco in the past or present).
Results: The mean Cotinine level in urine was significantly (p – value < 0.05) more among smoked tobacco users in comparison to smokeless tobacco users and non-users of tobacco. Whereas, the mean Cotinine level in urine was significantly (p - value < 0.05) more among smokeless tobacco users in comparison to non-users of tobacco.
Conclusion: The mean cotinine levels among smokers and both smokeless and smoked tobacco users were found to be higher than only smokeless tobacco users and non-users of tobacco.