Oral sex linked to cancer risk

By Agence France-Presse
Monday, February 21, 2011 14:51 EDT
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WASHINGTON (AFP) – US scientists have said there is strong evidence linking oral sex to cancer, and urged more study of how human papillomaviruses may be to blame for a rise in oral cancer among white men.

In the United States, oral cancer due to HPV infection is now more common than oral cancer from tobacco use, which remains the leading cause of such cancers in the rest of the world.

Researchers have found a 225-percent increase in oral cancer cases in the United States from 1974 to 2007, mainly among white men, said Maura Gillison of Ohio State University.

“When you compare people who have an oral infection or not… the single greatest factor is the number of partners on whom the person has performed oral sex,” said Gillison, who has been researching HPV and cancer for 15 years.

“When the number of partners increases, the risk increases,” she told reporters at the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Washington.

Previous studies have suggested that people who have performed oral sex on six or more partners over a lifetime face an eight-fold higher risk of acquiring HPV-related head or neck cancer than those with fewer than six partners, she said.

But even though the link between HPV and cervical cancer has been well known for many years, and vaccines now exist to provide some protection, much study remains to be done to confirm observational links and establish causes, Gillison said.

“The cervical cancer field is 20 years ahead,” she said.

“We can’t demonstrate definitively that certain behaviors are associated with risk of acquiring an infection,” she said.

“The rise in oral cancer in the US is predominantly among young white males and we do not know the answer as to why.”

Researcher Diane Harper of the University of Missouri said such studies will take time, but the oral cancer field may move more quickly by using technology already developed for detecting HPV in cervical cancer patients.

“One of the scientific technologies that have evolved over time is the way that we detect HPV,” said Harper.

“I think that the head and neck cancer area will benefit from that because we have gone through all kinds of different laboratory techniques to make sure we are actually finding what we think is HPV and getting type-specific information to go with that.”

There as many as 150 different types of human papillomaviruses, and about 40 of those can be sexually transmitted, according to the National Cancer Institute.

Some may cause genital warts, while other more high-risk varieties can cause oral, anal, vaginal and penile cancers.

Sexually transmitted HPV infections are common and often asymptomatic, and untreated cases in women are the main cause of cervical cancer.

Half of all sexually active Americans will get HPV at some point in their lives, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated.

Two vaccines, Gardasil and Cervarix, were approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2006 for HPV types that cause cervical cancer and genital warts.

However, only 40 percent of US girls have received one dose and just 17 percent have received all three doses in the regimen, said researchers.

A study published earlier this month in the New England Journal of Medicine found that the HPV vaccine could prevent 90 percent of genital warts in men, and the vaccine has also been approved against anal cancer in men and women.

Harper said she was not recommending the general population get the HPV vaccine because research has not yet established its effectiveness past five to eight years for cervical cancer.

“We know from all of the very good modeling studies that have been done throughout the world that if the vaccine does not last for a minimum of 15 years, cervical cancer will not be prevented, it will only be postponed,” she said.

For now, Harper and fellow presenter Bonnie Halpern-Felsher of the University of California San Francisco recommended that patients discuss HPV with their doctors.

“If you talk to health care providers and certainly parents and other educators, they are not talking to teens about oral sex, period,” said Halpern-Felsher, who has studied teenagers’ attitudes and sexual behaviors.

“Teens really have no idea that oral sex is related to any outcome like STIs (sexually transmitted infections), HPV, chlamydia, and so on.”

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  • http://www.rawstory.com/ hounddogg

    i call bullshit…eating a macdogfood hamburger is much more harmful than eating pussy…

  • Anonymous

    I guess these researchers haven’t noticed… being alive puts one at risk of dying.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PCRNBMCPGAOEFGLTXYZVLQ2QPA Razi Masoud

    Yeah try to take that away from us too, you fuckers!
    where’s the joker when you need one. Oh right he’s dead, sorry (too soon?:P)

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_JETED5IFXLBHDCPATGS3JUS5HU Dip Stick

    I’ve eaten pussy that tastes better than a Mickey D filet of shit. Given that choice, eat Mickey D’s or eat pussy and get cancer, well break me out some pussy and chemo.

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ hounddogg

    pass the Podophyllotoxin and Taxol!…

  • Arlo J. Thudpucker

    There is always the possibility of some Santorum leakage in some folks.

  • Guest

    Get the vaccine if you plan to be munching muff or men’s stuff. Better to be safe than sorry!

  • Guest

    Yes, but oral, esophogeal and neck cancers are awful ways to die. Would you rather have that or just go out in a quick cardiac blaze?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5EDD6MBYPGGUIC4G2V4JI4KYLQ Flashlight

    I call bullshit, also. How did the human race ever survive without alla these “vacines”? Methinks it’s a shill to scare people into lining up for their gov’t poison. Whatever the stated intent, the result is that they speard all manner of disease – Hepatitis, autism, aids even thru this crap.

    From just one of many sites dealing with this..


    “Each 0.5-mL dose of the vaccine contains approximately 225 mcg of aluminum (as amorphous aluminum hydroxyphosphate sulfate adjuvant), 9.56 mg of sodium chloride, 0.78 mg of L-histidine, 50 mcg of polysorbate 80, 35 mcg of sodium borate, and water for injection. The product does not contain a preservative or antibiotics.

    “Cervarix, the HPV vaccine was introduced to the UK in September 2008. Just two weeks later on 15th October 2008 at a school in Liverpool, Ashleigh Cave, just 12 years old had her first shot. Within minutes she became severely ill with a migraine headache, within 48hours she had collapsed 5 times and within 1 week she was unable to stand or walk. Since 24th October 2008 this once fit little girl has been in the hospital. She is now in Alder Hey Hospital Liverpool, England, UK and is still unable to walk and suffering from excruciating pains in her legs. Sadly since the New Year little Ashleigh has deteriorated and is now desperately ill.”

  • Jaimie11

    No surprise Maura Gillison’s oral cancer studies are funded by Merck. Oh poor Merck, must be needing an income fix. Better get the word out and pull those pediatricians on board to vaccinate all our our children with another of Pharma’s rare-but-deadly-side-effects products.

    Yes, the risk your child will keel over and die from this vaccine is slight and your child’s death is meaningless in the great scheme of Merck’s bottom line, even if the protection the vaccine offers is incomplete and very expensive, and has to be given multiple times.

    But when the new healthcare is up and running, Merck will have a shoe in the door for mandated vaccines, no exceptions, and boy, will the oligarchs ever be making money on your taxpayer funded health care. They’ll be the death of you, no doubt.

  • Anonymous

    Guess I know what I’ll be dying from, then.

    Really, this is just another drug company funded “study”, just like every other one that shows that we all need to be taking EVERY drug that every pharma company makes, if just for preventive measures. Sorry, I can’t afford that. I will stick with cannabis and vitamin C, thanks. And I refuse to get hooked on ANY pharma products. I just don’t trust them, not for a heartbeat. People lived just fine without them, for tens of thousands of years, and they didn’t die of cancers of every orifice and organ. Yeah, we live longer, but lots of the time those last years aren’t worth the pain they put people through. It’s all just a way to steal more money from us and put it in their pockets.

    BTW, if you want a good scary read, check out the Physicians Desktop Reference, or the PDR. It’s the info on every drug available in the US, including the “contraindications”, or side effects. Things like DEATH, which is a side effect for an alarming number of these drugs. Makes one wonder what is really worse, the little annoying pain, or the things the pill for that little annoying pain will put you through. And then the pill they SELL you for the side effects of that one. And the pill they SELL you for the side effects of THAT one. And on PAST the point where you’re broke.

    Maybe it would be better to have a life NOW rather than count on pills keeping you alive to have one later…

    But on with finding a new girlfriend so I can put my life in danger again… Gotta die from SOMETHING, no one gets out of here alive.

  • Anonymous

    Why are taxpayers funding and falling for this BUNCH OF UNPROVEN HOOEY?
    “science” is often another word for stupid sensationalism. Researcher’s glad to get
    lots of media attention for this garbage.

  • Anonymous

    Hmmmm, let me think about it. Die from eating fatty, gristle-laced steak or…

    Anyway, “225-percent increase” sounds pretty scary, but what are the raw numbers? If we’re still talking a fraction of a fraction of one percent *after* the increase this is mere scare tactics designed to enable some legislature to push for mandatory HPV vaccines, at great profit to the drug Co.

  • Anonymous

    and way higher in sodium, the leading cause of heart attacks & heart disease to those prone to high blood pressure. Sex on the other hand actually has all sorts of health benefits.

  • http://harry-canary.myopenid.com/ Harry Canary

    Sounds like the teabaggers are all going to get cancer.

  • Dolmance

    Better to have oral sex and die of cancer than to not have oral sex and die of something else.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YHUR5LALBGRBDQ5VAKAL3JDKNU JustinB

    Maybe the “Sopranos” were on to something.

  • Anonymous

    Bring on the cancer, I LUV that Pussy! Yum Yum!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1180173212 Jean C Harris

    On the one hand, an element which is poisonous on its own or in some compounds isn’t necessarily so in other compounds (i.e., the aluminum; e.g., chlorine, NaCl). On the other hand, the rest of your post. On the Other other hand, there are always going to be people with sensitivities, even to the most innocuous things; see, e.g., lactose intolerance, celiac disease, peanut allergies. On the OTHER other other hand, what Jamie11 says below!

  • Anonymous

    It’s really not bullshit. We’re talking about direct oral contact with a virus that is a known cancer-causer. It’s not as though the article is saying the act of cunnilingus by itself increases the risk of cancer. It’s simply a fact that choosing to do it with a wider variety of partners increases the chance of orally contracting the human papillomavirus. What makes that so hard to believe?

  • Anonymous

    So, why is this only effecting white guys?
    Are these doctors really trying to claim that black guys don’t go downtown?