The current study examined the psychometric properties of the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND) among tobacco smokers who use khat (Catha edulis), a widely used substance in East Africa and Arabian Peninsula. We also explored gender differences in response to FTND items because little attention has been paid to women's smoking behavior in Middle Eastern societies. A total of 103 (38 women) concurrent users (mean age ± SD: 24.4 ± 5.2) were recruited from two universities in Yemen. An Arabic version of FTND was developed using back-translation method. Chronbach's alpha was used to examine the reliability and principal component analysis was conducted to test the factor structure of the scale. The scale was found to have low internal consistency reliability (Chronbach's α =.58). Two factors were identified, accounting for 57% of the total variance. A series of chi-square analyses found that men indicated more symptoms associated with nicotine dependence than women (ps &.05). Although the poor reliability observed in the present sample argues for a cautious approach when assessing nicotine dependence among khat users, the findings on factor structure and gender differences may provide support for the validity of the scale. Taking into account sociocultural factors associated with patterns of smoking behavior among this population should improve the psychometric properties of FTND.
- gender difference
- khat use