The use of tobacco is the leading preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States and the most prominent cause of cancer.

A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that lung and bronchial cancers make almost half of the approximately 2.4 million tobacco-related cancers diagnosed in the United States in the period between 1999 and 2004.

CDC’s study has found the following:

1. the incidence of tobacco-related cancers was highest among blacks and non-Hispanics, and among men

2. lung, laryngeal, and cervical cancer rates were highest in the South, which has the highest rate of smoking in the United States.

3. smoking rates were lowest in the West as well as for all cancers, with the exception of stomach cancer.

4. among women, the rates of lung and bronchial cancer were similar in the South, Midwest, and Northeast and were lowest in the West

5. the high rates of lung and layrngeal cancers in the South were consistent with smoking patterns and reflect the strong link between these cancers and tobacco use.

6. other cancers associated with tobacco use were found to be pancreas, urinary bladder, esophagus, kidney, stomach, cervix, and acute myelogenous leukemia. These cancers accounted for more than one million cancer cases diagnosed between 1999 and 2004.

This report gives strong evidence of the serious harm of tobacco use, report researchers from the CDC's Division of Cancer Prevention and Control

They knew tobacco was associated with lung and laryngeal cancer but the study has now confirmed it again. The rates for these two cancers were highest in areas with the highest prevalence of tobacco use.

CDC believes that if proven strategies were fully implemented to decrease tobacco use, much of the suffering and death that cancer inflicts on families and communities could be prevented.