Objective: To provide an overview of the disease risks associated with cigarette smoking and the benefits of smoking cessation.
Data sources: Government reports and monographs, and research articles.
Conclusion: Cigarette smoking causes over 400,000 deaths per year and is a major cause of coronary heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and lung cancer. The disease risks associated with cigarette smoking are proportional to the intensity and duration of smoking. Cessation of cigarette smoking results in a decline in risk in relation to the risks of continuing smokers.
Implications for nursing practice: Clinicians must be aware of the magnitude of smoking-related risks and the benefits of smoking cessation as a critical intervention.