Although the human papillomavirus (HPV) has been identified by a number of studies as the cause of the increasing incidence of oropharyngeal cancer, it has remained unclear whether this increase is a global phenomenon. Now, a new study has shown that rates of this type of cancer increased significantly between 1983 and 2002 worldwide, especially in economically developed countries.
In order to investigate the global increase of oropharyngeal cancer rates, researchers from the U.S. evaluated incidence trends for oropharyngeal cancer and oral cancers in 23 countries. For the analysis, a cancer registry of more than 180,000 patients was used.
The researchers found that among women in all countries with significant increases in oropharyngeal cancer incidence (Denmark, Estonia, France, Poland, Slovakia, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the UK) there was also an increase in the incidence of both oral cancer and lung cancer, two diseases strongly associated with smoking. Among men and those under the age of 60 in particular, oropharyngeal cancer incidence increased significantly in the U.S., Australia, Canada, Japan and Slovakia, despite a decreasing incidence of oral cavity cancers, suggesting that other factors, such as HPV infection, could have contributed to an overall increase in oropharyngeal cancer cases.
The study, titled “Worldwide Trends in Incidence Rates for Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancers,” was published online on Nov. 18 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology ahead of print. It was conducted by researchers at the National Cancer Institute in collaboration with the Ohio State University and the International Agency for Research on Cancer.
Original Source: The Dental Tribune.com