Knowledge of Human Papillomavirus and its Association with Head and Neck Benign and Malignant Lesions in a Group of Dental Patients in Pakistan


Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) remain a serious world health problem due to their association with cervicaland head and neck cancers. While over 100 HPV types have been identified, only a few subtypes are associatedwith malignancies. HPV 16 and 18 are the most prevalent oncogenic types in head and neck cancers. Althoughit has been proven that some subsets of benign and malignant head and neck lesions are associated with HPV,the general population have very little awareness and knowledge of their association with HPV. Therefore, thepurpose of this study was to determine the knowledge of HPV and its links with head and neck benign andmalignant lesions in a group of Pakistani dental patients who attended the Dental Department of the Sandemanprovincial hospital in Quetta, Pakistan. One hundred and ninety-two patients were recruited and requested toanswer a questionnaire. It was revealed that there was a low level of knowledge about HPV and its association withhead and neck benign and malignant lesions among the participants. This result suggested that more educationregarding the relationship of HPV in inducing head and neck benign and malignant lesions is required in thisgroup of patients.