Home > Issue 3 (Volume 16) > Distribution of human papillomaviruses (HPV) by geographical area and affected organ in Greece


Introduction: Even today we do not have a comprehensive picture of the impact of the virus in Greece and its location at various anatomical sites.

Aim: The aim of the study was to investigate and record the impact of HPV infection in the Greek population with emphasis on the affected organ/system.

Methodology: The data of the tissue bank of the histology and embryology laboratory of the Medical School of Athens was utilized. It includes cases with the following characteristics: a) they are fully characterized in terms of HPV infection (complete subtyping of the virus), b) they belong to benign and malignant neoplasms of various organs with complete histopathological assessment, c) have been collected in at least the last decade d) have accompanying clinical and demographic data and e) their origin covers the entire Prefecture of Attica and a wide age range.

Results: In 60% of the samples no type of HPV was detected, while in 12%, low-risk types were detected and in 28% high-risk types. Women had a higher rate of infection with different types of HPV and were at higher risk, with HPV types 16 & 18 being more common than men, who were more likely to have HPV 6 & HPV 11 types. Infection with a high-risk type occurred in 23.4% of women versus 0.3% of men. The most common type in cervical secretions was HPV 16 (14% and 10.3% respectively), followed by HPV 18 with rates of 7.4% and 10.3% respectively. Regarding skin, HPV types 16 & 18 were found with the same frequency (11.1%). In the perineum-rectum, the types of HPV6 & 11 predominated (20.7%), followed by HPV 16 & 18.

Conclusion: The present study contributes to the further investigation of the prevalence of HPV in Greece, with emphasis on more types of HPV and more anatomical sites, providing information on the male population. It will help update public health planning, detect and prevent HPV-related cancers in both sexes in Greece.

Key words: anatomical site, incidence, HPV, neoplasia, gender

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