Association of pretreatment body mass index and survival in human papillomavirus positive oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma

William Greer Albergotti, Kara S. Davis, Shira Abberbock, Julie E. Bauman, James Ohr, David A. Clump, Dwight E. Heron, Umamaheswar Duvvuri, Seungwon Kim, Jonas T. Johnson, Robert L. Ferris

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11 Scopus citations


Background Pretreatment body mass index (BMI) >25 kg/m2 is a positive prognostic factor in patients with head and neck cancer. Previous studies have not been adequately stratified by human papilloma virus (HPV) status or subsite. Our objective is to determine prognostic significance of pretreatment BMI on overall survival in HPV+ oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (OPSCC). Methods This is a retrospective review of patients with HPV+ OPSCC treated between 8/1/2006 and 8/31/2014. Patients were stratified by BMI status (>/<25 kg/m2). Univariate and multivariate analyses of survival were performed. Results 300 patients met our inclusion/exclusion criteria. Patients with a BMI >25 kg/m2 had a longer overall survival (HR = 0.49, P = 0.01) as well as a longer disease-specific survival (HR = 0.43, P = 0.02). Overall survival remained significantly associated with high BMI on multivariate analysis (HR = 0.54, P = 0.04). Conclusions Pre-treatment normal or underweight BMI status is associated with worse overall survival in HPV+ OPSCC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-60
Number of pages6
JournalOral Oncology
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2016



  • Body mass index
  • Human papillomavirus
  • Oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma
  • Survival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oral Surgery
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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