To examine any association between silicosis and lung cancer, the clinic records of a cohort of 1502 silicotic workers diagnosed after 1981 were reviewed. All of the essential data, including occupational exposure, smoking habits, radiographic extent of silicosis, and vital status of each subject, were noted. The standardized mortality ratio for various causes of death was calculated. Thirty-three patients died from lung cancer, giving a standardized mortality ratio of 1.94 (95% confidence interval, 1.35 to 2.70). However, smoking accounted for most of the excess of lung cancer deaths among the silicotic workers in the cohort, and no consistent relationship between lung cancer mortality risk and either duration of exposure to silica dust or severity of silicosis was observed. There is no conclusive evidence in our data to support the hypothesis that lung cancer may be associated with silicosis.