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A 40-year-old member asked:

What is a difference between liver cancer and cirrhosis of the liver?

6 doctor answers13 doctors weighed in
Dr. Sidney Vinson
Gastroenterology 27 years experience
See below: Cirrhosis is the replacement of normal tissues in the liver with scar tissue. This affects the functioning of the liver. Liver cancer is when cells in the liver begin growing out of control creating a tumor or mass.
Dr. Carlo Contreras
A Verified Doctoranswered
A US doctor answeredLearn more
See below: Cirrhosis is a condition brought on by chronic liver damage. The liver reacts by trying to regenerate, but also forming scar tissue within the liver as well. This chronic damage and regeneration causes disregulated growth which can then lead to liver cancer over a period of years.
Dr. Samir Gupta
General Surgery 29 years experience
One is a cancer: Liver cirrhosis is a disease of the liver that leads to severe scarring and ultimate dysfunction of the liver. Liver cancer can occur in the setting of cirrhosis and is seen in patients with cirrhosis due to hepatitis and alcohol abuse. Metastatic liver cancer can occur due to migration of cancer cells to the liver from another organ.
Dr. Jason Hemming
Gastroenterology 17 years experience
Scarring vs Cancer: Cirrhosis is scarring of the liver without malignancy though it is a risk factor for liver cancer.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 44 years experience
Yes: Cirrhosis from some causes (hepatitis b / c, hemochromatosis, less likely alcohol) can become complicated by primary liver cancer. Cirrhosis itself is bad scarring of the liver, while liver cancer is a clone of liver cells growing out of control and eventually learning to invade.
Dr. Gurmukh Singh
Pathology 49 years experience
Liver cancer is worse but cirrhosis even without cancer is bad.
Oct 16, 2012
Dr. Robert Rahimi
Hepatology 9 years experience
Depends: Liver cancer can arise from cirrhosis which is called a primary liver cancer or hepatocellular cancer (HCC), or a secondary liver cancer meaning the cancer has come from somewhere else in the body (metastatic liver cancer). Either way, you need to see a liver specialist who can suggest options.

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Similar questions

A 35-year-old member asked:

Is cirrhosis of the liver cancer?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Liawaty Ho
Hematology and Oncology 23 years experience
No it is not: Cirrhosis is not cancer.It is caused by chronic liver disease characterized by replacement of liver tissue by scar tissue and regenerative nodules leading to loss of liver function. You are at risk to develop liver cancer if you have liver cirrhosis.
A 36-year-old member asked:

I want to know what is the difference between liver cancer and cirrhosis of the liver?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Rahimi
Hepatology 9 years experience
Could be the same: Liver cancer can arise from other organs (secondary metastasis) if there is another primary cancer (i.e. From the GI track, lung cancer, etc) however, in those with cirrhosis, the most common primary cancer of the liver is hepatocellular cancer (hcc). With chronic liver inflammation from liver disease, scarring occurs over time leading to about a 5% risk of hcc developing per year with cirrhosis.
CA
A 24-year-old member asked:

What's the chance of getting liver cancer when you have cirrhosis?

5 doctor answers26 doctors weighed in
Dr. Luke Hermann
Emergency Medicine 25 years experience
Depends: It depends on what caused the cirrhosis but all patients with a severely damaged liver are at increased risk to develop liver cancer- roughly 2% chance per year.
Dr. Carlo Contreras
A Verified Doctor commented
A US doctor answered Learn more
Male gender, older age, obesity, alcohol and tobacco consumption, and diabetes are factors associated with an increased risk of liver cancer.
Jan 23, 2012
A 34-year-old member asked:

If you have cirrhosis of the liver does that increase your risk of liver cancer?

4 doctor answers8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Sidney Vinson
Gastroenterology 27 years experience
Yes: Cirrhosis is one of the most common causes of liver cancer.
A 43-year-old member asked:

I'm just wondering, if you have cirrhosis of the liver can that bring on liver cancer?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Sewa Legha
Medical Oncology 50 years experience
Yes: Cirrhosis is a risk factor for developing liver cancer. But it happens in a minority of patients, most die due to other complications of cirrhosis.

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Last updated Mar 22, 2020
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