Objectives: The current study aimed at describing the distribution and characteristics of malignancy related deaths in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infected patients in 2010 and at comparing them to those obtained in 2000 and 2005.
Methods: Data were obtained from three national surveys conducted in France in 2010, 2005 and 2000. The underlying cause of death was documented using a standardized questionnaire fulfilled in French hospital wards involved in the management of HIV infection.
Results: Among the 728 deaths reported in 2010, 262 were cancer-related (36%). After a significant increase from 28% in 2000 to 33% in 2005 and 36% in 2010, cancers represent the leading cause of mortality in HIV infected patients. The proportion of deaths attributed to non-AIDS/non-hepatitis-related cancers significantly increased from 2000 to 2010 (11% of the deaths in 2000, 17% in 2005 and 22% in 2010, p<0.001), while those attributed to AIDS-defining cancers decreased during the same period (16% in 2000, 13% in 2005 and 9% in 2010, p = 0.024). Particularly, the proportion of respiratory cancers significantly increased from 5% in 2000 to 6% in 2005 and 11% in 2010 (p = 0.004). Lung cancer was the most common cancer-related cause of death in 2010 (instead of non-Hodgkin lymphoma so far) and represented the leading cause of death in people living with HIV overall.
Conclusions: Cancer prevention (especially smoking cessation), screening strategies and therapeutic management need to be optimized in HIV-infected patients in order to reduce mortality, particularly in the field of respiratory cancers.