One in nine American men infected with oral HPV, study finds

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One in nine American men infected with oral HPV, study finds

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A certified medical assistant holds vials of the HPV vaccination drug Gardasil. More parents are having their children vaccinated against HPV to help combat the possibility of disease from the virus later in life.

Oral human papillomavirus, or HPV, is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases. However, men are more at risk than women, with one in nine American males infected, according to a new report published in Annals of Internal of Medicine

Researchers from Harvard University and other institutions across the country recently conducted a study to determine the difference in prevalence of oral and genital HPV infection among men and women. 

To do so, they used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination, a CDC survey that monitors the health and nutritional statuses of Americans.

Scientists specifically gathered information from the 2011 to 2014 records, examining adults aged 18 to 69, who were given physical examinations that included tests for 37 types of HPV as well as an interview.

After analyzing the results, they estimated that 11.5 percent of the 11 million men assessed had an oral HPV infection, and 3.2 percent of the 3.2 million women evaluated had oral HPV.

Furthermore, analysts found that the prevalence of all HPV types was highest among men. High-risk HPV affected about 7.3 percent of men, overall, and just 1.4 percent of women, overall. 

The probability of high-risk oral HPV was greatest among black participants, marijuana users, cigarette smokers who smoked more than 20 cigarettes a day and those who reported having 16 or more vaginal or oral sex partners. 

“This study's findings provide several policy implications to guide future OPSCC prevention efforts to combat 

this disease,” the authors said in the study.

That’s why researchers hope to conduct more studies to find better ways to screen for the disease and get the HPV vaccine to people of all ages. 

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