Smoking causes death



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Health Effects of Cigarette Smoking

Overview


Smoking harms nearly every organ of the body. Smoking causes many diseases and reduces the health of smokers in general.1

Smoking and Death


Smoking causes death.

  • The adverse health effects from cigarette smoking account for an estimated 443,000 deaths, or nearly one of every five deaths, each year in the United States.2,3

  • More deaths are caused each year by tobacco use than by all deaths from human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, suicides, and murders combined.2,4

  • Smoking causes an estimated 90% of all lung cancer deaths in men and 80% of all lung cancer deaths in women.1

  • An estimated 90% of all deaths from chronic obstructive lung disease are caused by smoking.1

Smoking and Increased Health Risks


Compared with nonsmokers, smoking is estimated to increase the risk of—

  • coronary heart disease by 2 to 4 times,1,5

  • stroke by 2 to 4 times,1,6

  • men developing lung cancer by 23 times,1

  • women developing lung cancer by 13 times,1 and

  • dying from chronic obstructive lung diseases (such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema) by 12 to 13 times.1

Smoking and Cardiovascular Disease


  • Smoking causes coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States.1

  • Cigarette smoking causes reduced circulation by narrowing the blood vessels (arteries) and puts smokers at risk of developing peripheral vascular disease (i.e., obstruction of the large arteries in the arms and legs that can cause a range of problems from pain to tissue loss or gangrene).1,7

  • Smoking causes abdominal aortic aneurysm (i.e., a swelling or weakening of the main artery of the body—the aorta—where it runs through the abdomen).1

Smoking and Respiratory Disease


  • Smoking causes lung cancer.1,2

  • Smoking causes lung diseases (e.g., emphysema, bronchitis, chronic airway obstruction) by damaging the airways and alveoli (i.e., small air sacs) of the lungs.1,2

Smoking and Cancer


Smoking causes the following cancers:1

  • Acute myeloid leukemia

  • Bladder cancer

  • Cancer of the cervix

  • Cancer of the esophagus

  • Kidney cancer

  • Cancer of the larynx (voice box)

  • Lung cancer

  • Cancer of the oral cavity (mouth)

  • Cancer of the pharynx (throat)

  • Stomach cancer

  • Cancer of the uterus

Smoking and Other Health Effects


Smoking has many adverse reproductive and early childhood effects, including increased risk for—

  • infertility,

  • preterm delivery,

  • stillbirth,

  • low birth weight, and

  • sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

Smoking is associated with the following adverse health effects:

  • Postmenopausal women who smoke have lower bone density than women who never smoked.

  • Women who smoke have an increased risk for hip fracture than women who never smoked.


Tobacco-Related Mortality

Overview


  • More deaths are caused each year by tobacco use than by all deaths from human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, suicides, and murders combined.1,2

  • Smoking cigarettes, pipes, or cigars increases the risk of dying from cancers of the lung, esophagus, larynx, and oral cavity.3,4

  • Smokeless tobacco is a known cause of human cancer.5 In addition, the nicotine in smokeless tobacco may increase the risk for sudden death from a condition where the heart does not beat properly (ventricular arrhythmias) and, as a result, the heart pumps little or no blood to the body's organs.5




Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States.3

Cigarettes and Death


Cigarette smoking causes about 1 of every 5 deaths in the United States each year.1,6 Cigarette smoking is estimated to cause the following:1

  • 443,000 deaths annually (including deaths from secondhand smoke)

  • 49,400 deaths per year from secondhand smoke exposure

  • 269,655 deaths annually among men

  • 173,940 deaths annually among women


Cigarette use causes premature death:

  • On average, adults who smoke cigarettes die 14 years earlier than nonsmokers.7

  • Based on current cigarette smoking patterns, an estimated 25 million Americans who are alive today will die prematurely from smoking-related illnesses, including 5 million people younger than 18 years of age.8

Secondhand Smoke and Death


Exposure to secondhand smoke—sometimes called environmental tobacco smoke—causes nearly 50,000 deaths each year among adults in the United States:1

  • Secondhand smoke causes 3,400 annual deaths from lung cancer.1

  • Secondhand smoke causes 46,000 annual deaths from heart disease.1,9,10

Increased Risk for Death Among Men


  • Men who smoke increase their risk of dying from bronchitis by nearly 10 times, from emphysema by nearly 10 times, and from lung cancer by more than 22 times.3,11

  • Smoking triples middle-aged men's risk of dying from heart disease.11

Increased Risk for Death Among Women


  • Women who smoke increase their risk of dying from bronchitis by more than 10 times, from emphysema by more than 10 times, and from lung cancer by nearly 12 times.3,11

  • Between 1960 and 1990, deaths from lung cancer among women increased by more than 500%.12

  • Smoking triples middle-aged women's risk of dying from heart disease.11

Death from Specific Diseases


Tobacco use causes disease and death. Each year, smoking causes thousands of deaths from numerous diseases. The following table lists the estimated number of smokers who die each year from smoking-related diseases.1

Annual Cigarette Smoking-Related Mortality in the United States*

Disease

Male

Female

Total

*In this table, deaths due to secondhand smoke and fire burn are not included.

Malignant Neoplasms (Cancer)

Lip, Oral Cavity, Pharynx

3,749

1,144

4,893

Esophagus

6,961

1,631

8,592

Stomach

1,900

584

2,484

Pancreas

3,147

3,536

6,683

Larynx

2,446

563

3,009

Trachea, Lung, Bronchus

78,680

46,842

125,522

Cervix Uteri

0

447

447

Kidney and Renal Pelvis

2,827

216

3,043

Urinary Bladder

3,907

1,076

4,983

Acute Myeloid Leukemia

855

337

1,192

Subtotal

104,472

56,376

160,848

Cardiovascular Diseases

Ischemic Heart Disease

50,884

29,121

80,005

Other Heart Disease

12,994

8,060

21,004

Cerebrovascular Disease

7,896

8,026

15,922

Atherosclerosis

1,282

611

1,893

Aortic Aneurysm

5,628

2,791

8,419

Other Arterial Disease

505

749

1,254

Subtotal

79,139

49,358

128,497

Respiratory Diseases

Pneumonia, Influenza

6,042

4,381

10,423

Bronchitis, Emphysema

7,536

6,391

13,927

Chronic Airway Obstruction

40,217

38,771

78,988

Subtotal

53,795

49,543

103,338

Grand Total

237,406

155,277

392,683

Source: CDC, Smoking-Attributable Mortality, Years of Potential Life Lost, and Productivity Losses—United States, 2000–2004


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