Drinking And Smoking Don't Boost HPV-related Cancer Risk
quote:New Brown University research, however, shows that alcohol and tobacco use doesn’t further increase the risk of contracting head and neck cancers for people infected with HPV16. This finding, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, is the strongest evidence to date that these major cancers have two distinct causes — and may represent two distinct classes of cancer — and would require different prevention and treatment strategies.
Karl Kelsey, M.D., a Brown professor of community health and pathology and laboratory medicine and the director of the Center for Environmental Health and Technology, said the research has public health policy implications.
While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that girls and young women receive the HPV vaccine to prevent cervical cancer — HPV16 causes about half of all cervical cancer cases — boys and men cannot get the vaccine. An estimated 20 million Americans are currently infected with genital HPV and 50 to 75 percent of sexually active men and women are infected with HPV at some point in their lives, according to the National Institutes of Health.
“Our current HPV vaccine recommendations should change,” Kelsey said. “Head and neck cancers, regardless of their cause, are predominantly male diseases. If boys and men received the HPV vaccine, a lot of these cancers could be prevented.”
Ref: Brown University (2007, November 27). Drinking And Smoking Don't Boost HPV-related Cancer Risk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 28, 2007, from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071127164933.htm