Although this study did not show higher risk of oropharyngeal malignancy in HIV patients overall, they still had much higher prevalence of NHL as well as HL than HIV negative patients. Presence of cervical lymphadenopathy is unreliable in differentiating malignant oropharyngeal tumours from benign lymphoid hyperplasia in HIV patients.
The aim of this study was to compare the histology of oropharyngeal masses between HIV positive and negative patients.
A retrospective review of 119 patients who underwent oropharyngeal biopsies in a tertiary institution between 2007-2014 and whose HIV status was known (HIV positives =47; negatives =72).
Malignancies occurred in 63.8% of HIV patients and 65% of the negative group (p = 0.87). While non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), and Hodgkin’s lymphoma (HL) constituted 40%, 27%, and 17% of malignancies in HIV patients, respectively; in the HIV-negative group, it was 53%, 13%, and 2% for SCC, NHL, and HL, respectively (p = 0.039, 0.017, and 0.035, respectively). Reactive lymphoid proliferation accounted for 82.4% of the benign masses in the HIV positive group. Malignant tumours were recorded more in younger patient in the HIV positive than the negative group (p = 0.001).