Unraveling the Epidemiology of Oral Human Papillomavirus Infection

Annals of Internal Medicine
21 November 2017 Vol: 167, Issue 10

Unraveling the Epidemiology of Oral Human Papillomavirus Infection
The burden of oral cancer in the United States has been evolving for at least 2 decades. Gains in head and neck cancer control afforded by a period effect of reduced tobacco exposure have been displaced by competing cohort effects of increasing sexual exposure to human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and subsequent increases in HPV-associated head and neck cancer, particularly oropharyngeal cancer (1). The male predominance of oropharyngeal cancer in the United States is paralleled by a much higher prevalence of oral HPV infection and a stronger relationship between number of sexual partners and oral HPV prevalence in men than women (2). The reason the risk for oral HPV infection differs between men and women remains unclear, particularly because the prevalence of genital HPV infection is similar in both sexes.
Oral Human Papillomavirus Infection: Differences in Prevalence Between Sexes and Concordance With Genital Human Papillomavirus Infection, NHANES 2011 to 2014