Surgeon general: Tobacco use a 'pediatric epidemic'

"After years of steady decrease following the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement of 1998, declines in youth tobacco use have slowed for cigarette smoking and stalled for use of smokeless tobacco," the report found. "The latest research shows that concurrent use of multiple tobacco products is common among young people, and suggest that smokeless tobacco use is increasing among White males."

Public health groups urged more government action.

"The Surgeon General's report confirms that combined interventions — such as mass media campaigns, well-funded state prevention and cessation programs, increased tobacco taxes, and smoke-free laws — reduce tobacco use among youth and adults," said the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network. "The American Heart Association strongly supports all of these interventions."