HPV status influences mortality risk in oropharynx cancer

Study underlines the need for vigilance on both cancer and noncancer morbidity

Patients with HPV-negative cancer of the oropharynx have a three-fold higher short-term risk of death than those with HPV-positive oral cancer, a new study suggests.

HPV virus

The findings, published in Cancer, also underscore the importance of smoking cessation counselling and lung cancer screening for HPV-negative patients, the researchers say.

The Harvard Medical School-led team analysed data from 4930 patients with oropharynx cancer, diagnosed with non-metastatic disease, from 2013 to 2014, to determine their risk of cancer