Women With HIV Have Higher Cervical Cancer Progression

cervical cancer cells
cervical cancer cells
Women with HIV are more likely to experience progressive cervical changes.

Women with HIV are more likely to experience progressive cervical changes, according to a study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

The study evaluated 1320 women from Senegal, West Africa between 1994 and 2010. Cytology by Pap smear and human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA testing were conducted at approximately 4-month intervals.

The median age at baseline was 35 and 47% of patients were HIV-positive. The baseline cervical natural history stage was normal in 36.1%, HPV-positive in 58.5%, and high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (HSIL) were present in 5.4%.

Women who were HIV-positive had a higher risk of cervical adverse transition compared with patients who were HIV-negative, including from HPV to HSIL (HR, 2.55; 95% CI, 1.69 to 3.86; P <.0001). Adverse transition was associated with HPV-16/18 and CD4-positive count <200/mm3.

Infection with HIV-1 was associated with a greater incidence rate of HPV detection and cervical progression from HPV to HSIL compared with HIV-2 infection, with and without adjustment for age and CD4-positive count.

According to the authors, these results can “be used to inform the eventual implementation of comprehensive population-based screening paradigms that are not yet widely available in the limited resource setting of sub-Saharan Africa.”

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Whitham HK, Hawes SE, Chu H, et al. A comparison of the natural history of HPV infection and cervical abnormalities among HIV-positive and HIV-negative women in Senegal, Africa. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2017;26:886-94 doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-16-0700

This article originally appeared on Cancer Therapy Advisor