Background. Little is known about the type-specific prevalence of anal human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and risk factors for anal high-risk (HR) HPV infection in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–infected women.
Methods. A cross-sectional study of anal and cervical HPV infection was nested within a gynecological cohort of HIV-infected women. Specimens were tested for type-specific DNA using a polymerase chain reaction–based assay.
Results. The study population consisted of 311 women with a median age of 45.3 years, of whom 42.8% originated from sub-Saharan Africa and 96.8% were receiving combination antiretroviral therapy. The median CD4+ cell count was 612/μL, and the HIV load was <50 copies/mL in 84.1%. HR-HPV types were detected in the anal canal in 148 women (47.6%) and in the cervix in 82 (26.4%). HPV-16 was the most prevalent type in both the anal canal (13.2% of women) and the cervix (5.1%). In multivariable analysis, factors associated with prevalent anal HR-HPV infection were CD4+ count <350/μL (odds ratio, 2.9; 95% confidence interval, 1.3–6.5), concurrent cervical lesions (2.6; 1.0–4.3), and cervical HR-HPV infection (1.8; 1.0–3.2).
Conclusions. The high prevalence of HR-HPV types, including HPV-16, in the anal canal of HIV-positive women is concerning. Anal cancer screening should be considered for HIV-positive women as part of their routine care.