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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Women have been warned about the dangers of the human papilloma virus (HPV) for years, but men now face the risk of oral cancer.
Doctors say the HPV is causing an epidemic of oral cancers in otherwise healthy young men. It’s estimated that HPV causes about 70 percent of cancers of the tongue and tonsils, and 80 percent of these cancers occur in men.
Experts say the cancer is spread through oral contact.
Doctors call it a shocking trend, saying it could be the start of a pandemic.
“To see a change in the demographic like this is concerning, because the patients coming in now are really these clean-living patients. Most of them are professionals. Very few of them have any tobacco history,” said DR. Eric Genden of Mount Sinai Medical Center.
The virus can also be spread through kissing; it can lie dormant for years before possibly developing into cancer.