Recently published research in the Journal of Clinical Oncology suggests that Scientists could make it possible to predict cancers of the throat caused by the HPV (human papillomavirus) a decade before they are diagnosed in patients.
Early symptoms of the HPVvirus/disease can be indicated through a simple blood test which traces blood markers associated with certain HPV induced throat cancers.
This comes after actor Kirk Douglas’s son Michael Douglas plagued the media with reports that his throat cancer was a result of orally contracting the (STD) sexually transmitted disease. However, Michael Douglas never confirmed the truth nor fallacy of the reports, he only simply reiterated this statement he initially made when rumors began to swirl: “Oral Sex can lead to throat cancer.”
More than 135 patients diagnosed with throat cancers were given the blood test and studied by the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study.
Results established that 1/3 of the total participant’s blood tests detected HPV antibodies nearly 10 years before their cancers were diagnosed or even symptoms and signs were detectable. Antibodies in the body are produced when the immune system is working to combat infections. 1/3 of all cases of throat cancers are caused by the human papillomavirus.
Study author, Paul Brennan remarks:
“Until now, there were no accurate markers for early detection of this cancer.”
Scientists and researchers are ecstatic and intrigued about these findings, although this particular blood test won’t be available in a Dr’s office for quite some time.
Dr. Ellie Maghami, chief of the Division of Head and Neck Surgery at the City of Hope National Medical Center in Duarte, California states:
“Perhaps these types of patients could be under closer surveillance, so this potentially allows for more regular screening, early detection, earlier diagnosis and earlier intervention. If caught early, about 90% of HPV-related throat cancers can be treated effectively or cured”
As with any type of disease or cancer early detection is key. Those who are sexually active at younger ages, and have had several sexual partners have a higher risk of getting the HPV. In addition, she adds that it is imperative that parents educate their children on safe sex practices as well as take the necessary precautionary measures by encouraging teenagers to get the HPV vaccine- which was established in 2006.