Epidemiology of AIDS-related malignancies an international perspective

Hematol Oncol Clin North Am. 2003 Jun;17(3):673-96, v. doi: 10.1016/s0889-8588(03)00048-0.


Patients with HIV infection are at increased risk for developing Kaposi's sarcoma, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, and several other cancers. The relative risks for the most common epithelial cancers in the general population--lung, breast, colon/rectum, stomach, liver, and prostate--are not increased substantially in people with AIDS, however. Accumulating data suggest that HIV-infected patients also are at increased risk for developing Hodgkin's lymphoma, cervical carcinoma in situ (CIS), other anogenital neoplasms (invasive cancer and CIS), leiomyosarcoma, and conjunctival squamous cell carcinoma. There is inconclusive evidence, however, with regard to HIV infection being associated with invasive cervical cancer, testicular seminoma, or hepatocellular carcinoma. Notably, other viral infections have been implicated in the etiology of many of these conditions. The introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has decreased the incidence of AIDS-associated cancers in Western countries, but less than 1% of AIDS patients are receiving HAART in the HIV epicenter of sub-Saharan Africa. Further therapeutic advances that extend survival with HIV infection with varying reconstitution of immune competence may lead to additional alterations in cancer risk.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome / complications*
  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome / drug therapy
  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Africa / epidemiology
  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active
  • Global Health
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma, AIDS-Related / classification
  • Lymphoma, AIDS-Related / epidemiology
  • Neoplasms / classification
  • Neoplasms / etiology*
  • Sarcoma, Kaposi / epidemiology
  • Sarcoma, Kaposi / etiology