Patients with genital warts at high risk of cancer
Patients with genital warts have higher risk of cancers related to human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, particularly anogenital malignancies, a new study has shown.
During the study period, 21,763 patients (59.67 percent female) developed genital warts, with the incidence being highest in the 20 to 29 age group. During follow-up, 1,002 (4.60 percent) cancer cases were recorded with a mean time to cancer diagnosis of 4.17±3.06 years.
Of the 1,002 cancer patients, 69.96 percent (n=701) were female while 30.04 percent (n=301) were male (standardized incidence ratio [SIR] compared to general population, 1.95; 95 percent CI, 1.83 to 2.07).
Excess risk was marginally higher in males (SIR, 1.87; 1.66 to 2.08) than in females (SIR, 1.80; 1.66 to 1.93) because of anogenital cancers in the anus and penis (SIR, 5.87; 2.04 to 9.71) and HPV-related cancers (SIR, 13.57; 3.52 to 23.62). Females had higher risk of anogenital cancers in the cervix in situ (SIR, 3.34; 2.20 to 4.48).
The risk of smoking-related malignancies, such as cancers of the pharynx, oesophagus, larynx, liver and pancreas, among others, were markedly higher in males (SIR, 1.83; 1.47 to 2.19) and females (SIR, 1.88; 1.40 to 2.36) compared to the general population.
Specifically, risk of lung cancer in males (SIR, 2.0; 1.4 to 2.8) and kidney cancer in females (SIR, .41; 1.19 to 3.63) were higher than in the general population.
Data used in the study were retrieved from the National Health Insurance Research Database of Taiwan. Only those diagnosed with genital warts were included. Patients who had previous cancer diagnoses or were diagnosed within 30 days of the genital warts were excluded.