Genital Wart and Human Papillomavirus Prevalence in Men in the United States From Penile Swabs: Results From National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a common sexually transmitted infection in the United States that can lead to both malignant (high-risk) and benign (low-risk) findings. These low-risk findings include both genital condyloma, anal warts, and adult or juvenile papillomatosis, which are directly attributable to subtypes HPV 6 and HPV 11. We aim to estimate the prevalence of genital wart infections in men in the US population using a nationwide sample.

The NHANES database was queried for all men aged 18 to 59 years during the years 2013 to 2014. During these years, the survey included penile swabs that were tested for HPV infection from 37 subtypes using PCR. Information was also obtained regarding patient reported history of having a genital wart infection previously.

A total of 1757 men had information regarding HPV DNA. Fifty-three men tested positive for HPV 6 or HPV 11 DNA. This corresponds to an estimated prevalence of 2.9% (95% confidence interval, 2.2-3.8) of men aged 18-59 years. In addition, 2.2% (95% confidence interval, 1.5-3.3) of men reported a history of genital wart infection. There was no significant association with genital HPV DNA detection with age. Increasing number of sexual partners was associated with higher rates of both genital warts and HPV 6 and HPV 11 DNA.

The estimated prevalence of genital HPV DNA in the US male population is 2.9%. This burden of disease could potentially be lowered with increased usage of quadrivalent and nonavalent vaccinations.

Sexually transmitted diseases. 2018 Jun [Epub]

Michael Daugherty, Timothy Byler

From the Department of Urology, SUNY Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY.

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