Human papillomavirus tumour status is not associated with a positive depression screen for patients with oropharyngeal cancer

J. R. Qualliotine, J. A. Califano, Ryan Li, D. Gold, B. Messing, G. Lee, P. Ha, C. Fakhry

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1 Scopus citations


Background: Several risk factors for depression in patients with oropharyngeal cancer have been determined. However, it is unknown whether human papillomavirus associated oropharyngeal cancer, which has a distinct clinico-demographic profile, modulates this risk. Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted of patients with oropharyngeal cancer. These patients had completed a 10-item depression screening questionnaire before receiving treatment for their disease from 2011 to 2014. Associations between patient or disease characteristics and depression screening questionnaire results were investigated. Results: The study comprised 69 patients, 31 (44.9 per cent) of whom screened positive for depression. There were no significant differences in distributions of clinico-demographic or histopathological characteristics, including human papillomavirus tumour status, by depression screen result. Conclusion: This population has a high risk for depression, but no obvious risk factors, including human papillomavirus tumour status, were associated with an elevated risk. This inability to risk-stratify patients by clinico-demographic or disease characteristics emphasises the importance of regular depression screening for all patients in this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)760-767
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Laryngology and Otology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2017



  • Depression
  • Head And Neck Cancer
  • Oropharyngeal Neoplasms
  • Papillomaviridae
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology

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