In this article, Dr Sandeep Nayak will be giving an overview of liver cancer, its treatment, causes, and risk.
Dr. Sandeep Nayak is one of the best oncologists in India; he has been an expert in minimally invasive cancer surgery, including robotic, laparoscopic, and endoscopic surgery.
According to research, statistics show that liver cancer is the most common cancer.
As per statistics, in 2020 about 905,677 people were affected with liver cancer.
You can reach out to the doctor or other oncologist specialists here.
Stages of liver cancer
|Healthy liver (Stage 0)||The liver is healthy, and there are no problems.|
|Fatty liver (Stage 1)||The liver is enlarged due to fatty deposits in the cells.|
|Fibrosis liver (Stage 2)||In stage 2, the liver tissue begins to be replaced by connective tissue.|
|Cirrhosis liver (Stage 3)||Excessive development of connective tissue,Restructuring of the liver and vascular systems, formation of areas of necros|
|Liver cancer (Stage 4)||As a result of a malignant transformation of hepatocytes, liver cancer is formed.|
Symptoms of liver cancer
Some symptoms can be mild while the others severe,the symptoms of liver cancer are:
- Abdominal and back pain
- Feeling nausea or constant vomiting
- Sudden weight loss
- Yellow skin on the face and eyes
- Internal bleeding
- Itching on the skin
- Swelling of the abdomen
- Enlarged liver
Types of liver cancer
Two types of liver cancer are primary liver cancer and secondary liver cancer.
The primary liver cancer starts in the liver itself, while the secondary liver cancer starts somewhere else in the body and then spreads to the liver.
The secondary one is also called metastasized liver cancer.
The most common type of liver cancer is hepatocellular carcinoma, and this type can be formed as a massive tumor or small tumor across the liver.
Other types include:
- Hepatocellular carcinoma
Diagnosis of liver cancer
liver cancer will have different types of diagnoses. The tests will be conducted by which the doctor recommends for you.
- CT scan
- MRI scan
- Blood test
- Liver biopsy
- Bone scan
Treatments of liver cancer
Surgery to remove the tumor
If your tumor is small and your liver is functioning well, the doctor might remove the tumor surrounding healthy tissue; this will only be done if your liver is functioning well.
The doctor will replace your liver with a healthy liver received from the donor in this surgery.
A liver transplant can only be done when the patient is in the early stages of liver cancer.
Radiation therapy is conducted only if other methods of treatment have not worked.
In radiation therapy, high-powered energy is directed to the liver to kill all the cancer cells; in this treatment, some of the surrounding healthy cells might also be destroyed, but doctors see that the damage to the healthy cells is as less as possible.
Chemotherapy is treated for the last stages of cancer.
Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill the cancer cells; the drug is injected through the vein, taken orally, or together.
The cancer cells produce proteins that bind the disease-fighting cells, because of which they can’t fight the cancer cells. Immunotherapy helps to break this.
Targeted drug therapy
Target drug therapy is drugs that kill cancer genes or target cancer cells.
This treatment is performed on people that have advanced cancer.
Some other local treatments
Ethanol treatment (If ethanol (the type of alcohol found in your favorite adult beverages) is injected into a tumor, it destroys proteins and causes the cells to dehydrate and die)
Radiofrequency ablation (Radiofrequency ablation for cancer is a minimally invasive procedure that uses electrical energy and heat to destroy cancer cells.)
Heating cancer cells (Hyperthermia is a type of treatment in which body tissue is heated to as high as 113 °F to help damage and kill cancer cells with little or no harm to normal tissue.)
Freezing cancer cells(Freeze the cells slowly by reducing the temperature at approximately 1°C per minute using a controlled rate cryo-freezer or a cryo-freezing container such as “Mr. Frosty,”)
If you are consuming alcohol, start decreasing your alcohol intake and stop it eventually.
Monitor sudden weight changes and consult specialists for maintaining a healthy weight.
It is recommended that you exercise regularly; cardio is one of the best workouts.
Other prevention measures include:
- vaccination for hepatitis B
- Hepatitis B virus can cause liver failure, scarring of the liver, lifelong liver disease and lastly liver cancer. Therefore it is necessary to take a vaccination for hepatitis B.
- Reduce the risk of hepatitis c.
- Hepatitis is an infection caused by a virus that attacks your liver and leads to inflammation.
- There are no vaccinations for hepatitis C, but you can avoid it as it mostly occurs when one person comes in contact with blood from an infected person.
According to dr sandeep nayak, liver cancer can be detected at an early stage, and therefore if you notice any symptoms be sure to consult your doctors immediately.
Prevention is always better than cure.
Try to live a balanced life, eating healthy, exercising regularly and staying stress free does wonders to your physical and emotional health.