Prevalence and Risk Factors of Human Papillomavirus in Male Patients: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2018 Oct 10;15(10):2210. doi: 10.3390/ijerph15102210.


Human papillomavirus (HPV) is one of the most prevalent sexually transmitted infections. Although the research focus has been on women, men are also affected. Thus, the aim was to estimate the prevalence of HPV in men and to analyse its risk factors. A systematic review with meta-analysis was performed. The main health science databases were consulted. The search terms were was: "papilloma virus AND (prevalence OR risk factors) AND men". The final sample of studies was n = 16 and the men sample for the meta-analysis was n = 18,106. The meta-analysis revealed a prevalence of 49% (95% Confidence Interval (CI): 35⁻64%) of any type of human papillomavirus in men and 35% (95% CI: 26⁻45%) of high-risk human papillomavirus in men. The included studies showed that stable sexual habits, circumcision and condom use are protective factors against HPV. In addition, there is a certain positive association with tobacco use and the early initiation of sexual intercourse. In conclusion, the prevalence of HPV in men is high. The risk factors for HPV infection are sexual promiscuity, early sexual debut, absence of circumcision, lack of condom use and smoking. Further study in this field about the effectiveness of the vaccine and health education should be conducted.

Keywords: epidemiology; health promotion; men; papillomavirus; prevalence; risk factors.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Circumcision, Male
  • Condoms
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Papillomavirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Smoking / epidemiology
  • Vaccination