Reproductive and genital health and risk of cervical human papillomavirus infection: Results from the Ludwig-McGill cohort study

Ludwig-McGill Cohort Study

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11 Scopus citations


Background: There are inconsistencies in the literature on reproductive and genital health determinants of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, the primary cause of cervical cancer. We examined these factors in the Ludwig-McGill Cohort Study, a longitudinal, repeated-measurements investigation on the natural history of HPV infection. Methods: We analyzed a cohort subset of 1867 women with one complete year of follow-up. We calculated odds ratios (OR) and 95 % confidence intervals (CI) for reproductive and genital health characteristics from questionnaire and laboratory data in relation to 1-year period prevalence of HPV infection. Two outcomes were measured; the first based on phylogenetic grouping of HPV types based on tissue tropism and oncogenicity (Alphapapillomavirus Subgenus 1: species 1, 8, 10 and 13; Subgenus 2: species 5, 6, 7, 9, 11; Subgenus 3: species 3, 4 and 14) and the second based on transient or persistent HPV infections. Results: Lifetime (Subgenus 3 OR = 2.00, CI: 1.23-3.24) and current (Subgenus 3 OR = 2.00, CI: 1.15-3.47) condom use and use of contraceptive injections (Subgenus 1 OR = 1.96, CI: 1.22-3.16, Subgenus 2 OR = 1.34, CI: 1.00-1.79) were associated with increased risk of HPV infection. Intrauterine device use was protective (Subgenus 1 OR = 0.48, CI: 0.30-0.75, Subgenus 2 OR = 0.78, CI: 0.62-0.98). These factors were not associated with persistence of HPV infection. Tampon use, previous gynecologic infections and cervical inflammation were associated with an overall increased risk of HPV infection. Conclusions: Cervical HPV infection was associated with reproductive and genital health factors. Further studies are necessary to confirm the low to moderate associations observed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number116
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 8 2016


  • Cervical cancer
  • Determinants
  • Genital hygiene
  • HPV
  • Human papillomavirus
  • Reproductive health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases


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