The purpose of this review is to evaluate literature published since 1978 on the association between smoking and stroke. Two cohort studies found a dose-response relationship between the amount of cigarettes smoked per day and the relative risk of stroke. Also, two of the cohort studies found that when smoking ceased, the risk of stroke lessened (p less than 0.001). Nine case-control studies found a significant association between smoking and stroke for men and women. The biological association between smoking and stroke is plausible and several epidemiologic studies are supportive of this thesis. Additional, well-designed epidemiologic studies with a sufficient sample size to detect reasonably small odds ratios or relative risks (thus providing adequate statistical power) are warranted.