HealthDay News — Men with phimosis have increased prevalence of human papillomavirus (HPV) and high-risk HPV genotypes compared with asymptomatic men, according to a study published in The Journal of Urology.

Larissa A. Afonso, PhD, from the Universidade Federal Fluminense in Rio de Janeiro, and colleagues examined the incidence of HPV infection in 110 asymptomatic men and 30 patients who underwent circumcision due to phimosis. DNA was extracted from swabbed samples from asymptomatic men and from foreskin samples obtained at circumcision in men with phimosis.

The researchers found that 46.6% of patients with phimosis had HPV, of whom 50% had high-risk HPV genotypes. Overall, 16.3% of the asymptomatic cases were HPV positive; high-risk HPV was seen in only 1 sample. Patients presenting with phimosis had a significantly higher rate of HPV genital infection than asymptomatic men (P = .00167). Patients with phimosis had significantly higher prevalence of high-risk HPV genotypes (P = .004).

“We found a robust association between phimosis and the genital HPV prevalence in men and a significant frequency of high-risk HPV,” the authors write. “Other studies are needed to investigate the occurrence of factors that can increase the incidence of penile carcinoma and determine its impact on female genital infection in cervical cancer.”

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  1. Afonso LA, Cordiero TI, Carestiato FN, et al. High Risk Human Papillomavirus Infection of the Foreskin in Asymptomatic Men and Patients with Phimosis. J Urology. 2016;195(6):1784-1789; doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2015-12-096