NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms
A tube-shaped tobacco product that is made of finely cut, cured tobacco leaves wrapped in thin paper. It may also have other ingredients, including substances to add different flavors. A cigarette is lit on one end and smoked, and the smoke is usually inhaled into the lungs. Cigarettes contain nicotine and many cancer-causing chemicals that are harmful to both smokers and nonsmokers. Smoking cigarettes can lead to nicotine addiction and can cause many types of cancer, including cancers of the lung, larynx, mouth, esophagus, throat, kidney, bladder, pancreas, stomach, and cervix, and acute myeloid leukemia. Smoking cigarettes also causes other health problems, including heart disease, stroke, and lung diseases, such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis.