November 3, 2008

25,000 HPV-Linked Cancers Occur Per Year

Some 25,000 cases of human papillomavirus-associated cancers occurred annually during 1998-2003, U.S. government health officials said.

A report released Monday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta said the estimates of HPV-associated cancers were collected prior to the development of the HPV vaccine, providing a baseline to measure the impact of HPV vaccine and cervical cancer screening programs in reducing the incidence of cervical cancer and other HPV-associated cancers and pre-cancers.

Dr. Mona Saraiya of the CDC's Division of Cancer Prevention and Control and coordinator of the studies said that the researchers used data from CDC's National Program of Cancer Registries and the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program.

The top HPV-associated cancer sites were cervix, oral cavity and oropharynx, anus, vulva, penis and vagina, the report said.

The study, published online ahead of print in the Nov. 15 supplement edition of Cancer, found more HPV-associated cancers occur in the cervix than any other site -- about 10,800 per year. However, cancers in some areas of the head and neck -- oral cavity and oropharynx -- are more likely to be HPV-associated than other areas.