An Epidemic of Head and Neck Cancer

Cancer of the oropharynx in men is on the rise. Such cancers have traditionally been blamed on smoking and/or drinking so what accounts for its increase in a time of reduced rates of smoking and alcohol abuse? A virus; human papillomavirus (HPV). See "HPV-Associated Head and Neck Cancer: A Virus-Related Cancer Epidemic".

Remember, (1) the focus of this year’s World Cancer Day was a call for greater awareness of the contribution of infectious disease to cancer; and, (2) the "age of receding panemics" never really passed – we just stopped looking for them.