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Smoking and Tobacco

Women Smokers and Heart Disease Risk

Cigarette SmokingSmoking is the most preventable cause of early death in United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that smoking-related diseases cause the deaths of about 174,000 women each year. Women smokers who die of a smoking-related disease lose, on average, 14 years of potential life.

In 2005, more than 20 million American women smoked (17.4% compared to 22.3% of men). Although rates of smoking had been declining, this decrease in smoking rates appears to be stalling.

Smoking is a major cause of heart disease among women:

Women who stop smoking greatly reduce their risk of dying prematurely. Most importantly, quitting smoking is beneficial at all ages:

Lifestyle modifications recommended for all women to help reduce their risk for heart disease include:

Women can calculate their risk for heart disease by taking the Women's Heart Disease Risk Quiz (Women's Heart Foundation).

For More Information:

References:

Go Red for Women Campaign
The Heart Truth: A National Awareness Campaign for Women about Heart Disease
The Healthy Heart Handbook for Women—2005 Edition (PDF 679K)

For more information:

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Last Reviewed: Apr 06, 2009

Karen L Ahijevych, PhD, RN, FAAN Karen L Ahijevych, PhD, RN, FAAN
Professor, College of Nursing
Professor, College of Public Health
College of Nursing
The Ohio State University

Phyllis L Pirie, PhD Phyllis L Pirie, PhD
Professor of Health Behaviors & Health Promotion
College of Public Health
The Ohio State University

Mary Ellen Wewers, PhD, MPH Mary Ellen Wewers, PhD, MPH
Professor of Health Behaviors & Health Promotion
College of Public Health
The Ohio State University