Applicability of the Fagerstrom Test for Nicotine Dependence in smokers with schizophrenia

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry

Publication Date


Document Type



Adult; Breath Tests; Carbon Monoxide; Diagnosis, Dual (Psychiatry); Factor Analysis, Statistical; Female; Humans; Male; Middle Aged; *Psychiatric Status Rating Scales; Reproducibility of Results; *Schizophrenic Psychology; Tobacco Use Disorder




Up to 90% of individuals with schizophrenia smoke cigarettes, and many show signs of heavy dependence. Although the severity of nicotine dependence is often measured by the six-item Fagerstrom Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND), this measure, in its current form, may not be as appropriate in this population--or in others who's smoking is regulated by others--as in the general population due to differences in smoking patterns, living arrangements, and daily routines. These factors may produce an underestimate of nicotine dependence, which may have clinical implications for successful medical detoxification if the FTND scores are used to guide the dosage of nicotine replacement medication. Data indicate poor internal consistency reliability (alpha=.4581) and a factor pattern lacking simple structure (i.e., two nonmeaningful factors/components with substantial cross loadings) when administered to smokers with schizophrenia. Specific examples of problematic items and how these may contribute to an underestimate of tobacco dependence severity are discussed, as well as ways to modify the FTND to be more appropriate for this population.

DOI of Published Version



Addict Behav. 2005 Jan;30(1):49-59. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Addictive behaviors

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID