Human papillomavirus (HPV) drives tumorigenesis in a subset of oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinomas (OPSCC) and is increasing in prevalence across the world. Mounting evidence suggests HPV is also involved in a subset of sinonasal squamous cell carcinomas (SNSCC), yet small sample sizes and variability of HPV detection techniques in existing literature hinder definitive conclusions. A systematic review was performed by searching literature through March 29th 2020 using PubMed, Embase, and Web of Science Core Collection databases. Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines were followed by two authors independently. A meta-analysis was performed using the random-effects model. Sixty studies (n
= 1449) were eligible for statistical analysis estimating an overall HPV prevalence of 25.5% (95% CI 20.7–31.0). When stratified by HPV detection method, prevalence with multiple substrate testing (20.5%, 95% CI 14.5–28.2) was lower than with single substrate testing (31.7%, 95% CI 23.6–41.1), highest in high-exposure anatomic subsites (nasal cavity and ethmoids) (37.6%, 95% CI 26.5–50.2) vs. low-exposure (15.1%, 95% CI 7.3–28.6) and highest in high HPV+ OPSCC prevalence geographic regions (North America) (30.9%, 95% CI 21.9–41.5) vs. low (Africa) (13.1, 95% CI 6.5–24.5)). While small sample sizes and variability in data cloud firm conclusions, here, we provide a new reference point prevalence for HPV in SNSCC along with orthogonal data supporting a causative role for virally driven tumorigenesis, including that HPV is more commonly found in sinonasal subsites with increased exposure to refluxed oropharyngeal secretions and in geographic regions where HPV+ OPSCC is more prevalent.
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