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Consequences of Smoking.

Smoking and its consequences are responsible for the deaths of 5 million people every year worldwide.

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Smoking kills an estimated 440,000 US citizens each year, more than alcohol, illegal drug use, homicides, suicides, traffic accidents, and AIDS combined. Between 1964 and 2004, more than 12 million Americans died prematurely of smoking, and another 25 million living American smokers today are most likely to die of a tobacco-related disease.

Smoking cigarettes damages almost every organ of the body. It has definitely been linked to cataracts and pneumonia, and accounts for about one-third of all deaths from cancer. Overall cancer death rates are twice as high among smokers as non-smokers, heavy smokers who have rates that are four times higher than those of non-smokers. The most important cancer caused by smoking is lung cancer cigarette smoking has been linked to 90 percent of all cases of lung cancer , The number one killer of both men and women. Tobacco is also associated with cancers of the mouth, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, cervix, kidney, bladder and acute myeloid leukemia.

smoking consequences lung scan of smoker
Scan upper torso of a non-smoker vs scan of a smoker . Thanks to advanced neuroimaging technology, scientists can see the dramatic effect of smoking on the brain and body and are finding a marked decrease in levels of monoamine oxidase (MAO B), an important enzyme that is responsible Of the decomposition of dopamine. (Source: Fowler et al, 2003)

In addition to cancer, smoking causes lung diseases such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema, and has been found to exacerbate asthma symptoms in adults and children. About 90 percent of all deaths from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are attributable to cigarette smoking. It has also been well documented that smoking substantially increases the risk of heart disease, including stroke, myocardial infarction, vascular disease, and aneurysm. Smoking causes coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States: cigarette smokers are 4.2 times more likely to develop coronary heart disease than non-smokers.