In the American Cancer Society study, men and women smokers both experienced a 25-fold higher risk of dying from lung cancer over people who never smoked. Risk of death from other lung diseases also soared about 20-fold in smokers.
About 45 million Americans smoke, including 21 percent of men and 17 percent of women, according to a 2010 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Smoking has been steadily falling in popularity since the 1970s for men and the 1980s for women. Still, cigarette smoking is the nation's leading cause of preventable deaths, the CDC says, killing about 443,000 people each year.