Relationship between oral sex and throat cancer

About three years ago (in August 2010) the popular actor Michael Douglas They were diagnosed throat cancer in phase IV, which exceeded after 8 weeks of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Although tobacco is one of the main risk factors for this type of cancer, the actor surprised us just a few days ago when he told several media that the oral sex It was what really caused his cancer.

From the first moment it is possible that this affirmation can at least surprise us, but numerous scientific studies seem to give the reason - at least in part - to the actor.

Everything is due to human papilloma virus (HPV), a sexually transmitted virus that affects about 80% of sexually active people, and that is transmitted by genital and anal contact.

Unlike what happens with the AIDS virus, so that a person can become infected or get HPV does not need to mix fluids, as they are transmitted by contact. But of the 80% of people supposedly infected, only 1% develop warts, so that the great majority do not manifest symptoms, at the same time that the infection disappears alone without leaving sequels. They can even spend years and develop later.

Is there a relationship between oral sex and throat cancer?

Between 2000 and 2008 an investigation was carried out on 102 patients in the Puerta de Hierro, Ramón y Cajal, Doce de Octubre and La Princesa hospitals, which revealed that 26.7% of throat cancers detected in our country is caused by the human papilloma virus, which has been transmitted through oral sex. However, in a high percentage of patients were smokers.

The truth is that until a few years ago it was only related to the HPV virus with cancers of the cervix and anal. However, after the latest research, although most cases of oropharyngeal cancer have as main cause alcohol or tobacco consumption, it is likely that the change in sexual habits and the greater number of couples have ended up influencing the irruption of the oral sex as another cause.

How to prevent throat cancer if oral sex relations are maintained?

The prevention is practically the same that is followed when maintaining a safe sexual relationship: using the condom even when only going to maintain an oral sexual relationship.

Mainly because there are many infections (such as gonorrhea or syphilis) that are transmitted orally.

Many experts indicate that many people make the mistake of using only the prophylactic when there is penetration, but this is not enough. Therefore, the key is to always try to maintain safe sex, especially when we do not maintain a stable relationship and maintain relationships with different people.

In the case of Michael Douglas, the medical specialists consider that it is not possible to know in what percentage the tobacco or those relations affected in causing the appearance of the oropharyngeal cancer. In fact, after the controversy, the actor himself has qualified that his cancer was not due to oral sex.

Image | euthman This article is published for informational purposes only. It can not and should not replace the consultation with a Physician. We advise you to consult your Trusted Doctor. ThemesCancer

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