Myanmar Health Sciences Research Journal
Original Articles :
Myanamr Health Research Registration 2021; 33(1): 51-57.

High risk - Human Papillomavirus (HR-HPV) Infection and Associated Risk Factors among Oropharyngeal Cancer Patients Attending Yangon General Hospital

Mu Mu Shwe, Myo Myint Maw, Aye Myat Mon, Lynn Pa Pa Aye, Kham Mo Aung, Nu Nu Lwin, Ssu Wynn Mon & Win Maw Tun

Myanmar Health Sciences Research Journal


Oropharyngeal cancer (OPC) is a significant component of the global burden of cancer, worldwide being the sixth most common cancer and the eighth most common cause of cancer death. Nowadays, Human Papillomavirus (HPV) infection becomes the main risk factor for head and neck cancer development. In Myanmar, the related role of this viral infection to OPC is still uncertain. The objective of this study was to determine the proportion of high risk Human Papillomavirus infection and to detect the associated risk factors among oropharyngeal cancer patients by a cross-sectional descriptive method. OPC patients from Oncology Department, Yangon General Hospital were investigated during 2018-2019.



The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) published that the global cancer burden is estimated to have risen to 18.1 million new cases and 9.6 million deaths in 2018. One in 5 men and one in6 women worldwide develop cancer during their lifetime, and one in 8 men and one in 11 women die from the disease.1 Worldwide, oropharyngeal cancer (OPC) is a significant component of the global burden of cancer. Incidence and mortality rates are higherin men than women. ICO/IARC HPV Information Centre (2019) reported that age standardized incidence rate of OPC among male patients were 1.8% in the world, 1% in south-east Asia and 2.3% in Myanmar. Age standardized mortality rate of OPC among male patients were 1% in the world, 0.5% in South-east Asia and 1.5% in Myanmar.


Study population and design

This study was a cross-sectional descriptive study. In total, 60 OPC patients (medium age 56 years; range 33-85) from Oncology Department, Yangon General Hospital were investigated during 2018-2019.

After obtaining the written informed consent, a thorough history was taken using structured-proforma. Then, clinical and oral examination was performed under good light source. Oral swabs were obtained from the tumor by citoswab and kept in DNA fixative medium. Those samples were transported
to Technology Development Division, Department of Medical Research where the samples were stored in -20C freezer.


The last evaluation of the International Agency for Research in Cancer (IARC) on the carcinogenicity of HPV in humans concluded that (a) there is enough evidence for the carcinogenicity of HPV type 16 in the oral cavity, oropharynx (including tonsil cancer, base of tongue cancer and other oropharyngeal cancer sites), and (b) limited evidence for laryngeal cancer.



Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.