Smoking is a major risk factor for cognitive decline and dementia. However, the exact pathobiology of smoking remains unknown. The effects of smoking on cortical thickness as a biomarker of neurodegeneration or white matter hyperintensities and lacunes as biomarkers of cerebrovascular burden were concurrently evaluated.

Our study included 977 cognitively normal men who visited a health promotion centre and underwent medical check-ups, including 3.0 T magnetic resonance imaging. Participants were categorized into never smoker, past smoker or current smoker groups and pack-years and the years of smoking cessation were used as continuous variables.

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