Friday, May 11, 2007

Study of Human Papillomavirus and Oropharyngeal Cancer

From The NEJM :
The public health implications of our findings are underscored by the annual increases in the incidence of tonsillar and base-of-tongue cancers in the United States since 1973.36,37 The widespread oral sexual practices among adolescents may be a contributing factor in this increase.38 Our results and those of other studies provide a rationale for HPV vaccination in both boys and girls — since oropharyngeal cancers occur in men and women. If vaccination is as effective in preventing oral HPV-16 infection as it is in preventing cervical infection,39 a substantial reduction in the incidence of oropharyngeal cancer in vaccinated populations would provide the ultimate evidence of causality.

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