Investigation into the Presence of Human Papillomavirus in Patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnea

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The Laryngoscope


OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS: The human papillomavirus (HPV) is known to infect the tissues of the oropharynx as demonstrated in HPV-positive oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (OPSCC). HPV has also been shown to induce benign lymphoid hypertrophy. We sought to investigate an association between obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and the presence of HPV in palatine and lingual tonsillar oropharyngeal tissue.

STUDY DESIGN: Case series with chart review.

METHODS: This retrospective laboratory-based study of oropharyngeal tissue from patients with OSA included patients >18 years old who underwent surgical treatment for OSA at a single institution between January 2012 and May 2014. Surgical specimens of adequate size were analyzed for HPV6, 11, and 16 using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction from DNA extracted from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue blocks. Student t test, Pearson χ

RESULTS: Of 99 cases included in the study, six were positive for HPV: two with HPV16 and four with HPV6. BMI, AHI, age, and gender showed no significant differences between the HPV-positive and HPV-negative groups. Logistic regression to predict HPV positivity accounting for each variable and multivariate analysis were not statistically significant.

CONCLUSIONS: Our study did not show HPV to have a statistically significant association with OSA. None of the covariates analyzed (BMI, AHI, gender, age) predicted HPV positivity in surgically resected oropharyngeal tissue from OSA patients.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 4 Laryngoscope, 127:1231-1234, 2017.

Medical Subject Headings

Adolescent; Adult; Aged; Female; Human papillomavirus 11; Human papillomavirus 16; Human papillomavirus 6; Humans; In Vitro Techniques; Male; Middle Aged; Papillomavirus Infections; Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction; Retrospective Studies; Sleep Apnea, Obstructive; Tonsillectomy

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