Hepatitis C Virus and Oral Cancer – Extrahepatic Manifestations

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) causes not only severe liver damage but also extrahepatic manifestations, including glomerular disease, hematologic diseases such as cryoglobulinemia and lymphoma, autoimmune disorders and dermatologic conditions such as oral lichen planus (OLP). HCV can be considered as a virus with a triple tissue tropism (hepatotropism, lymphotropism and sialotropism) and extrahepatic tissues might act as a reservoir for HCV. HCV may be detected in tissue from OLP, oral cancer and salivary glands.

Hepatitis C Virus and Oral Cancer
Hepatitis C Virus and Oral Cancer

An association between HCV and head and neck cancer (HNCs) has been reported. Most recently, Mahale et al. reported that HCV is associated with nonoropharyngeal HNCs and human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive oropharyngeal cancers.

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