Anal cancer risk among people with HIV infection in the United States

Vivian Colón-López, Meredith S. Shiels, Mark Machin, Ana P. Ortiz, Howard Strickler, Philip E. Castle, Ruth M. Pfeiffer, Eric A. Engels

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Scopus citations


Purpose People with HIV infection have an elevated risk of anal cancer. However, recent calendar trends are incompletely described, and which population subgroupsmight benefit from cancer screening is unknown. Methods We used linked data from HIV and cancer registries in nine US areas (1996 to 2012). We calculated standardized incidence ratios to compare anal cancer incidence in people with HIV infection with the general population, used Poisson regression to evaluate anal cancer incidence among subgroups of people with HIV and to assess temporal trends, and estimated the cumulative incidence of anal cancer to measure absolute risk. Results Among 447,953 people with HIV infection, anal cancer incidence was much higher than in the general population (standardized incidence ratio, 19.1; 95% CI, 18.1 to 20.0). Anal cancer incidence was highest among men who have sex with men (MSM), increased with age, and was higher in people with AIDS than in those without AIDS (ie, HIV only; adjusted incidence rate ratio, 3.82; 95% CI, 3.27 to 4.46). Incidence among people with HIV increased steeply during 1996 to 2000 (annual percentage change, 32.8%; 95% CI, 21.0% to 78.2%), reached a plateau during 2001 to 2008, and declined during 2008 to 2012 (annual percentage change, 27.2%; 95% CI, 214.4% to 0.6%). Cumulative incidence after a 5-year period was high for MSM with HIV only age 45 to 59 or ≥ 60 years (0.32% to 0.33%) and MSM with AIDS age 30 to 44, 45 to 59, or≥60 years (0.29% to 0.65%). Conclusion Anal cancer incidence is markedly elevated among people with HIV infection, especially in MSM, older individuals, and people with AIDS. Recent declines may reflect delayed benefits of HIV treatment. Groups with high cumulative incidence of anal cancer may benefit from screening.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-75
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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