Smoking causes harm to nearly every organ in the body and is responsible for 87 percent of lung cancer fatalities, according to MedlinePlus. Smoking also causes other types of cancers and a variety of serious health ailments, including heart disease, stroke and blood vessel disease.
Approximately one-half of individuals who never quit smoking die from a smoking-related ailment, as MedlinePlus explains. Women who smoke while pregnant increase their chance of developing pregnancy problems and have a higher likelihood of birthing an infant who dies of SIDS. Nonsmokers who regularly inhale secondhand smoke can experience the same harmful effects as smokers.