Viruses are pathogenic agents responsible for approximately 10% of all human cancers and significantly contribute to the global cancer burden. Until now, eight viruses have been associated with the development of a broad range of malignancies, including solid and haematological tumours. Besides triggering and promoting oncogenesis, viral infections often go hand-in-hand with haemostatic changes, representing a potential risk factor for venous thromboembolism (VTE). Conversely, VTE is a cardiovascular condition that is particularly common among oncological patients, with a detrimental impact on patient prognosis. Despite an association between viral infections and coagulopathies, it is unclear whether viral-driven tumours have a different incidence and prognosis pattern of thromboembolism compared to non-viral-induced tumours. Thus, this review aims to analyse the existing evidence concerning the association of viruses and viral tumours with the occurrence of VTE. Except for hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, which are associated with a high risk of VTE, little evidence exists concerning the thrombogenic potential associated with oncoviruses. As for tumours that can be induced by oncoviruses, four levels of VTE risk are observed, with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and gastric carcinoma (GC) associated with the highest risk and nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) associated with the lowest risk. Unfortunately, the incidence of cancer-related VTE according to tumour aetiology is unknown. Given the negative impact of VTE in oncological patients, research is required to better understand the mechanisms underlying blood hypercoagulability in viral-driven tumours to improve VTE management and prognosis assessment in patients diagnosed with these tumours.
© 2023. The Author(s).