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March 1995

Importance of Human Papillomavirus DNA Typing in the Diagnosis of Anogenital Warts in Children

Author Affiliations

Division of Tumourvirus-Characterization 0660 Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum Im Neuenheimer Feld 242 69120 Heidelberg, Germany

Arch Dermatol. 1995;131(3):366-367. doi:10.1001/archderm.1995.01690150132037

Papillomaviruses constitute a group of very stable viruses1 that appear to be frequently transmitted by direct contact. In most instances, it has not been possible to determine the timing of the primary infection by a specific human papillomavirus (HPV) type. Human papillomavirus—typing studies conducted in lesions occurring in immunosuppressed patients led us to think that the primary infection with the majority of the more than 70 HPV types occurs early in life and usually subclinically. Anogenital lesions in children are very often considered an indicator of sexual abuse. A few studies have implied that this is not necessarily the case,2,3 but such evidence remains limited.

We have examined the anogenital lesions of 12 children ranging from 1 to 11 years of age. The diagnosis in all cases was condyloma acuminatum. The only additional information available to us is listed in the Table. No further clinical data, eg,