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Int J Gynecol Pathol. 1993 Oct;12(4):344-9.

Vulvar vestibulitis is rarely associated with human papillomavirus infection types 6, 11, 16, or 18.

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Department of Pathology, University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville 32610.


Vulvar vestibular biopsy specimens from 31 women with clinical and pathologic findings of vulvar vestibulitis were studied using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the identification of human papilloma virus (HPV). The PCR technique specifically probed for HPV types 6, 11, 16, and 18. Of the 31 subjects, three were found to have HPV within the biopsy specimens; two had HPV type 11 and one had HPV 16. Five of the 31 cases had histopathologic features of koilocytosis consistent with HPV effect; three of these five were found to have HPV. The findings support the hypothesis that HPV types 6, 11, 16, and 18 are rarely associated with vulvar vestibulitis. The frequencies identified were similar to those seen with control patients. True koilocytosis is the most useful pathologic feature distinguishing HPV-related cases; it is rarely identified in typical vulvar vestibulitis. Nonspecific changes in the vestibular epithelium associated with glycogen effect should not be interpreted as koilocytosis.

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