Learn about the disease, illness and/or condition Liver Cancer Hepatocellular Carcinoma including: symptoms, causes, treatments, contraindications and conditions at ClusterMed.info.
Liver Cancer Hepatocellular Carcinoma
|Liver Cancer Hepatocellular Carcinoma|
Liver Cancer Hepatocellular Carcinoma Information
Liver cancer facts
Are there alternative and complementary therapies for liver cancer?
Currently, there are no specifically approved alternative or complementary treatment options for liver cancer. Clinical research on the use of complementary and alternative medicine for liver cancer is limited. Studies suggest that certain alternative therapies may offer benefits for people being treated for all types of cancer, including liver cancer. Some alternative treatments have been found to alleviate unwanted side effects of conventional cancer treatments such as nausea and vomiting.Acupuncture: Studies have shown acupuncture can help with nausea and vomiting among people with cancer.Herbal therapy: Milk thistle has been used for centuries to treat liver problems. Mistletoe may also show promise in liver cancer in experimental studies.Some herbal preparations, such as those mentioned above, may be helpful in treating symptoms associated with liver cancer. Even so, people who have liver cancer need to take extra precautions before taking an herbal remedy.A person with cancer of the liver may have a harder time processing alcohol than people without liver disease and should avoid alcohol-containing products. Since many herbal preparations in extract form are alcohol-based, people with liver cancer should always check the ingredients for the presence of any alcohol before taking these herbs.Additionally, some herbal supplements, such as gingko biloba, can cause excess bleeding. Because the liver releases important substances that help the blood to clot, liver cancer can decrease the body's ability to stave off bleeding. People with liver cancer should discuss any new medications, including herbal supplements, with their doctor before taking them.
How do health care professionals diagnose liver cancer?
How is liver cancer staged?
According to the American Cancer Society, "The stage of cancer is a description of how widespread it is. The stage of a liver cancer is one of the most important factors in considering treatment options. A staging system is a standard way for the cancer care team to sum up information about how far a cancer has spread. Doctors use staging systems to get an idea about a patient's prognosis (outlook) and to help determine the most appropriate treatment. There are several staging systems for liver cancer, and not all doctors use the same system."Liver biopsy as well as imaging studies help in classifying liver cancer stages as per the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) TNM system, the Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) staging system, the Cancer of the Liver Italian Program (CLIP) system, or the Okuda system.
Is it possible to prevent liver cancer?
Prevention of cirrhosis, which is the underlying cause of liver cancer, will help in preventing the development of liver cancer.Routine surveillance for liver cancer by performing ultrasound of the liver every six months in patients with a cirrhotic liver will detect early liver cancer.
Is liver cancer curable?
Liver cancer is difficult to cure, as it is most often not caught in the early stage. When successfully treated, Liver cancer may never go away completely, so follow-up is very important. Blood tests and imaging tests may be part of a patient's survivorship plan. Statistics for liver cancer are difficult to apply to a specific patient, as the forms, stages and responses to treatment vary per individual. The statistics for deaths due to liver cancer in 2017 are estimated at 19,610 men and 9,310 women.
What are liver cancer symptoms and signs?
Liver cancer causes no symptoms of its own. As the tumor grows, it may cause symptoms of pain in the right side of the abdomen or feeling overly full after eating a little. Some patients may have worsening of symptoms of chronic liver disease or cirrhosis, which often precedes the development of cancer of the liver. For example, patients may complain of
What are the risk factors for liver cancer? Is liver cancer hereditary?
Incidence rates of hepatocellular cancer are rising in the United States due to increasing prevalence of cirrhosis caused by chronic hepatitis C and steatohepatitis (nonalcoholic fatty liver disease).Cirrhosis of the liver due to any cause is a risk factor for liver cancer. The risk factors for liver cancer in cirrhosis are being male, age 55 years or older, Asian or Hispanic ethnicity, family history in a first-degree relative, obesity, hepatitis B and C, alcohol use, and elevated iron content in the blood due to hemochromatosis.Chronic hepatitis B infection even without cirrhosis is a risk factor for liver cancer.
What are the types of liver cancer and liver tumors?
Benign liver tumors: This type of tumor can become large enough to cause problems but will not spread to other areas of the body. The treatment is usually surgery.Hemangioma: A hemangioma is a blood vessel tumor that only requires treatment if it bleeds.Hepatic adenoma: This is a type of benign liver tumor, which may cause abdominal pain or blood loss. Surgical removal is usually recommended.Focal nodular hyperplasia (FNH): This tumor is made up of several different types of cells (liver, bile duct, and connective tissue cells).Liver angiosarcoma (or hepatic angiosarcoma) and hemangiosarcoma are rare. This is a cancer of the inner lining of the blood vessels. Since the symptoms of liver angiosarcoma are nonspecific, usually this type of liver cancer is not discovered until it is too late to be treated effectively.Hepatocellular carcinoma: This is the most common form of primary cancer. Primary liver cancer is cancer that began in the liver. It can occur as a single tumor or many small cancer nodules throughout the liver. Primary liver cancer will commonly spread to the lungs, the portal vein (kidney), and portal lymph nodes.Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (bile duct cancer): As described by its name, this cancer starts where the bile duct connects to the liver. Between 10%-15% of liver cancers are of this type. This type of cancer commonly spreads (metastasis) to the lymph nodes, lung, and bone marrow.Hepatoblastoma: This is a rare cancer found in children, usually under age 4. This cancer is treated, successfully in most cases, with surgery and chemotherapy.Secondary cancer: This is a cancer that started elsewhere in the body and spread to the liver. This spread of cancer from a primary site to other parts of the body is called metastasis. Secondary liver cancer is more common in the United States than primary liver cancer. A secondary cancer will be treated by the techniques that have been successful for the primary type of cancer. For example, lung cancer that has spread to the liver will be treated using lung cancer protocols, which are the standards of medical care that have been effective for lung cancer.Lymphoma, a cancer of the immune system including the lymph nodes, also commonly spreads to the liver. Pancreatic cancer may also spread to the liver.
What causes liver cancer?
Most people who get liver cancer get it in the setting of chronic liver disease (long-term liver damage called cirrhosis), which scars the liver and increases the risk for liver cancer. Conditions that cause cirrhosis are alcohol use/abuse, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C.The causes of liver cancer may be linked to environmental, dietary, or lifestyle factors. For example, in November 2014, researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, found that long-term exposure to triclosan, a common ingredient in soaps and detergents, causes liver fibrosis and cancer in laboratory mice. Although triclosan has not been proven to cause human liver cancer, it is currently under scrutiny by the FDA to determine whether it has negative health impacts.
What is liver cancer?
Liver cancer definitionPrimary liver cancer is a condition or disease that happens when normal cells in the liver become abnormal in appearance and behavior. The cancer cells can then become destructive to adjacent normal tissues, and can spread both to other areas of the liver and to organs outside the liver. Liver cancer is also called hepatic cancer.Malignant or cancerous cells that develop in the normal cells of the liver (hepatocytes) are called hepatocellular carcinoma. A cancer that arises in the ducts of the liver is called cholangiocarcinoma.
What is metastatic liver cancer?
Metastatic cancer is cancer that has spread from the place where it first started (the primary site) to another place in the body (secondary site). Metastatic cancer in the liver is a condition in which cancer from other organs has spread through the bloodstream to the liver. Here the liver cells are not what has become cancerous. The liver has become the site to which the cancer that started elsewhere has spread. Metastatic cancer has the same name and same type of cancer cells as the original cancer. The most common cancers that spread to the liver are breast, colon, bladder, kidney, ovary, pancreas, stomach, uterus, and lungs.Metastatic liver cancer is a rare condition that occurs when cancer originates in the liver (primary) and spreads to other organs (secondary) in the body.Some people with metastatic tumors do not have symptoms. Their metastases are found by X-rays, CT scans, ultrasounds, or other tests. Enlargement of the liver or jaundice (yellowing of the skin) can indicate cancer has spread to the liver.
What is the follow-up after treatment for liver cancer?
Patients are advised to follow up with the doctor for lab tests and office visits. Patients with chronic liver disease should avoid alcohol and any drugs that can harm the liver. Patients with liver transplants will need to take anti-rejection drugs for the rest of their life to prevent their body from rejecting the new liver.
What is the medical treatment for liver cancer?
What is the prognosis of liver cancer? What are the survival rates for liver cancer?
The prognosis for liver cancer depends on multiple factors such as the size of the liver cancer, the number of lesions, the presence of spread beyond the liver, the health of the surrounding liver tissue, and the general health of the patient. Life expectancy depends on many factors that impact whether a cancer is curable.The American Cancer Society states the overall five-year survival rate for all stages of liver cancer is 15%. One of the reasons for this low survival rate is that many people with liver cancer also have other underlying medical conditions such as cirrhosis. However, the five-year survival rate can vary depending on how much the liver cancer has spread.If the liver cancer is localized (confined to the liver), the five-year survival rate is 28%. If the liver cancer is regional (has grown into nearby organs), the five-year survival rate is 7%. Once the liver cancer is distant (spread to distant organs or tissues), the survival time is as low as two years.Survival rate can also be affected by the available treatments. Liver cancers that can be surgically removed have an improved five-year survival rate of over 50%. When caught in the earliest stages, and the liver is transplanted, the five-year survival rate can be as high as 70%.Primary liver cancer deaths are usually from liver failure, bleeding, or advanced cancer.
Where can you learn more about liver cancer?
Patients can find many resources to learn more about cancer. A popular source is the American Cancer Society. Another is the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, which has a lot of information for consumers on resources and support groups.
Where is the liver located?
The liver is the largest organ inside the body and is located under the right ribs and beneath the right lung. The liver has several functions. It secretes bile into the intestines to absorb fats, breaks down and stores nutrients, manufactures clotting factors needed to stop bleeding, and breaks down toxic agents, like alcohol and drugs. Once the toxic agents are broken down, they can be eliminated from the body through urine or stool. One of the causes of cirrhosis, the scarring of the liver, is alcoholism. A person cannot live without a liver, so liver shut down or liver failure is fatal.Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver, which can progress to scarring (fibrosis) or liver cancer. Hepatitis can be caused by toxic substances, infection, or autoimmune diseases. Common viruses that cause hepatitis are referred to as types A, B, C, D, and E. It's possible to prevent hepatitis with a vaccine available for types A, B, and E.
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