The study believes that oral sex may be the major way the dreaded Papilloma Virus (HPV), which is more usually associated with cervical cancer ends up in the mouth.
Per the Daily Mail, the group viruses affect your skin and moist membranes which line the body, including your anus, cervix, mouth and throat.
The Human Papilloma Virus-16 is a popularly known cause of “oropharyngeal” tumours that affect the middle part of your throat such as the tonsils, the soft plate and the tongue.
The research, which was conducted by Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, suggested, also suggested that individuals carrying the virus in their mouth were an alarming 22 times more likely to develop a potentially deadly tumour.
In more cases than not, people usually view throat cancer as a disease that affects heavy smokers as well as drinkers in the later stage of life. However, this view appears to be changing as cases have been on the rise, with throat cancer now being linked with the common HPV.
The Human Papilloma Virus is not only spread by skin-to-skin contact, but also through sex, and affects almost everyone at some stage of their life. In most individuals, the immune system is able to fight it off, thereby preventing it from causing any harm.
However, on rare occasions, the HPV takes control, and could lead to a chain of events, which ends in cancer of the cervix, mouth, penis, vagina, and the anus.
The HPV-16 is viewed as the most common of the estimated number (around 15) of strains can cause cervical cancer.
Recently, famous Hollywood actor Michael Douglas claimed that his throat cancer which almost caused the star of the popular movie Basic Instinct and Fatal Attraction his life, was caused by engaging in oral sex. He was however, able to overcome and recover from a tumour, which is categorised as stage 4, which in most cases is terminal.
The new study, which has been published in JAMA Oncology, is the very first to show conclusively the presence of HPV-16’s in the mouth. This leads to the development oropharyngeal cancer, which is the exact same type that affected Hollywood star actor Douglas.
Detection of the Human Papilloma Virus in the mouth has also been found to be related to sexual behaviour.
The Albert Einstein College of Medicine’s finding was based on almost 97,000 people who provided mouthwash samples and were free of cancer at the beginning of the project.
The 97,000 people were closely monitored for an average of four years, and during the period, a total of 132 cases of head and neck cancer were identified.
They were compared with 396 healthy subjects who acted as controls, three for each case, with mouthwashes samples analysed for the presence of several types of oral Human Papilloma Virus in both groups.
The outcome of this study showed that people with HPV-16 in their mouthwash were 22 times more likely to develop oropharyngeal cancer than those with no noticeable trace of the virus HPV-16 in their samples.