AUA School of Public Health Publishes in the Most-cited Journal in the Field of Pediatrics: Protecting Young Children from Tobacco Smoke Exposure

Pic1 (2)Dr. Arusyak Harutyunyan, MD, MPH and her colleagues from the AUA School of Public Health (Narine Movsisyan, Varduhi Petrosyan, and Diana Petrosyan) and Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health (Francis Stillman) recently published an article in PEDIATRICS. PEDIATRICS is an official peer-reviewed journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. The journal is among the top 2% most-cited scientific and medical journals (among 8,005) and the most-cited journal in the field of pediatrics (

The article “Reducing Children’s Exposure to Secondhand Smoke at Home: A Randomized Trial” published on-line on November 4, 2013 and in the December issue of the PEDIATRICS is based on the findings of a randomized controlled trial conducted in the frame of the three-year collaborative research project between the AUA School of Public Health and Johns Hopkins Institute for Global Tobacco Control. FAMRI (Flight Attendant Medical Research Institute) Center of Excellence in Translational Research at Johns Hopkins University funded the project.

The research team randomized 250 households with children aged 2–6 years to an intensive intervention (counseling sessions, distribution of tailored educational brochures, demonstration of home air pollution, and two follow-up counseling telephone calls) or minimal intervention (distribution of standard leaflets) to assess the effectiveness of interventions to reduce children’s exposure to second hand tobacco smoke. The study concluded that the intensive intervention was effective in decreasing children’s exposure to second hand smoke through educating mothers and promoting smoking restrictions at home.
One of the anonymous reviewers wrote “The study was well-done, had positive results, and has important implication for child health, particularly in places where smoking rates are high. Use of hair nicotine in the context of an RCT is relatively new, and the authors should be commended for this. Nearly 90% of participants remained in the study to the end – an impressive accomplishment! Another interesting feature of this study is that it took place in a country, Armenia, which is characterized by very high male smoking rates and extremely low female smoking rates. Protecting young children from tobacco smoke exposure in cultures with high disparities in male/female rates of smoking poses a unique challenge, as those disparities may be correlated disparities in decision-making powers in the home.”

The full text article is available at