Prevalence of diabetes mellitus and its impact on disease severity in adult recurrent respiratory papillomatosis

Chia Jung Lee, Clint T. Allen, Albert L. Merati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objectives. Following human papilloma virus (HPV) infection, recurrent respiratory papillomatosis (RRP) develops secondary to dysfunction of innate and adaptive immune responses. Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a common medical disorder; these patients are considered to be relatively immunocompromised. It is hypothesized that comorbid DM occurs more frequently than expected in a cohort of adult RRP patients and that RRP patients with DM have more severe disease than those without DM. Study Design. Retrospective cohort study. Setting. Tertiary care laryngology practice, 5-year period. Subjects and Methods. Adult-onset RRP patients from 2007 to 2012 at the University of Washington were reviewed. The gender, age of onset of RRP, number of interventions, pathology, presence or absence of DM, and calculated anatomic Derkay severity score were recorded. Results. Eighty-four adult RRP patients were characterized; 64 male (76%) and 20 female (24%). Six of 84 patients (7.1%) had DM; this prevalence was not higher than an age-atched general population. The number of interventions required for disease control did not significantly differ (P = .13) between adult RRP patients with DM (avg 2.6/yr, median 2.3/year) and those without DM (avg 1.9/yr, median 1.3/yr). There was no significant difference in anatomic Derkay score at the time of intervention (P = .26) or presence of dysplasia in biopsy specimens (P = .49) between RRP patients with and without DM. Conclusions. In this large series of adult RRP patients, DM does not appear to have a higher prevalence than that seen in age-matched controls, nor do RRP patients with DM appear to have more severe disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)603-607
Number of pages5
JournalOtolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery (United States)
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Derkay severity score
  • diabetes mellitus
  • recurrent respiratory papillomatosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology

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