Oral sex has been linked to an increase in throat cancer. HPV, the same virus that causes cervical cancer, can also cause oropharyngeal cancers. In 2007, FOXNews reported [emphasis added]:
[HPV] causes more oropharyngeal cancers than tobacco and alcohol use, according to researchers at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center.The CDC thinks tobacco and alcohol are more to blame: "Cancers of the head and neck are mostly caused by tobacco and alcohol, but recent studies show that about 25% of mouth and 35% of throat cancers may be linked to HPV." The National Cancer Institute seems to side with the researcher quoted by FOXNews above:
"This is important because previously HPV was thought to be one of the risk factors for this type of cancer along with tobacco and alcohol use, and now we know that it is the leading cause of this type of cancer," said Dr. Aimee Kreimer, a professor at the National Cancer Institute and one of the study’s authors.
Researchers found that "the presence of an oral HPV 16 infection was strongly associated with oropharyngeal cancer." HPV 16 is one of the two strains of HPV most often associated with cervical cancer. Past exposure to HPV 16, as measured by presence of antibodies to the virus in serum samples, was also strongly associated with oropharyngeal cancer. Antibodies against HPV 16 were found in 64 percent of case patients but only 4 percent of control patients. Data collected on sexual history "suggest that oral HPV infection is sexually acquired…but we cannot rule out transmission through direct mouth-to-mouth contact or other means," said the authors.Let me get this straight. The schools are going to teach kids how to contract nasty diseases. Democrats are going to (try to) pass the public option so physicians will be compensated by the government for treating diseases that the government helped incubate.
A history of heavy tobacco and alcohol use remained a strong risk factor, but "combined exposure to HPV and heavy tobacco and alcohol use was not additive," they explained. "It is important for health care providers to know that people without the traditional risk factors of tobacco and alcohol use can nevertheless be at risk for oropharyngeal cancer," stated first author Dr. Gypsyamber D'Souza in an accompanying press release.