Pancreatic Tumors

Liver Tumors

Explanation Of Liver Tumors

Liver Tumors

Tumors are abnormal masses of tissue that form when cells begin to reproduce at an increased rate. The liver can grow both non-cancerous (benign) and cancerous (malignant) tumors. Benign tumors are harmless, quite common and have no symptoms. This mostly happens in women in the child bearing age. There are two kinds of benign liver tumors.

hepatocellular adenoma

Liver Tumors

There are no symptoms for this type of liver tumor. It can be removed surgically and will not cause any problem. An adenoma may rupture and bleed into the abdominal cavity, requiring surgery. Adenomas rarely become cancerous.

hemangioma

This type of benign tumor is a mass of abnormal blood vessels. Up to five percent of adults have small liver hemangiomas that cause no symptoms. Treatment is usually not required. Sometimes, infants with large liver hemangiomas require surgery to prevent clotting and heart failure.

The other type of liver tumor is the cancerous one. This is called malignant tumor. It is also known as hepatoma or primary liver cancer. This cancer develops when there is a chronic case of hepatitis B and C. Generally it is fatal. Other causes include alcoholism leading to chronic liver cirrhosis.

The symptoms of liver tumor are abdominal pain, weight loss, and nausea; vomiting, fever and jaundice - yellowing of the skin and eyes. Always consult a physician for any of the conditions. A liver function test (LFT), a CT scan, and a liver biopsy if there is a doubt for malignancy is the test conducted for liver tumors.

What is the treatment?

Like all cancers chemotherapy and radiotherapy are the treatments given for liver cancer also. If it is a benign tumor it will be cured with medication or a simple surgery to remove the lump. In case of cancer surgery is the third option to chemotherapy and radio therapy. Last option is a liver transplant surgery.

Some of the less common primary liver tumors are cholangiocarcinoma. This cancer starts in the lining of the bile channels or in bile ducts. Hepatoblastoma is a cancer which occurs in infants and children. Angiosarcoma is a rare cancer that originates in the blood vessels of the liver.

Other cancers

There are cancers which spread from other parts of the body to the liver. These are called metastatic cancer. Leukemia and other blood cancers spread and affect the liver. The symptoms are fever, fatigue, weight loss, enlarged spleen and liver, jaundice-yellowness of the skin and eyes. These symptoms may occur for other problems also. Consult your physician. The treatment for metastatic cancer is no different. Chemotherapy to kill the cancer cells or liver transplant, as the cancer has spread elsewhere also. Your doctor needs to consider your age, overall health and medical history and the extent of the disease before he decides on treatment. Your tolerance of particular medicines, procedures, or therapies should also be taken into consideration.

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