What is liver cancer?

Cancer. Liver cancer is an uncontrolled growth of liver cells due to disregulation of the mechanisms which control cell reproduction. It can be caused by chronic inflammation of the liver due to chronic infections, alcoholism, or chronic use of medications which adversely affect the liver.
HCC. There are many types of cancers that can develop in or spread to the liver. The most common type is hepatocellular carcinoma and it is usually the type referred to when someone talks about "liver cancer".

Related Questions

What is liver cancer called?

Hepatoma. There are multiple types of primary liver cancers, the short name for the commonest hepatocellular carcinoma is hepatoma. There are also cancers of the biliary tract, that are generally adenocarcinomas. The commonest cancer in the liver is metastatic cancer from multiple site, e.g., colon, lung, breast, prostate, pancreas and stomach etc. Read more...
HCC. The term 'liver cancer' most accurately refers to the tumor called hepatocellular carcinoma. Some people mistakenly refer to other tumors that have spread to the liver as liver cancer. It's important to be specific, since these tumors have different treatments and prognosis. Read more...

What exactly is liver cancer?

Tumor mass. Liver involved with different malignancies. A liver cancer should be related to cancer arising in liver cells and not cells that have spread to the liver from different forms of cancer. A primary liver tumor can arise from hepatitis B and C with induction thru a cirrhotic process. Other causes are from blood vessel lesions, and various primary sarcomas as well as tumors arising in bile duct. Read more...

What can cause liver cancer in a 5 year old child? Isn't that very young?

Hepatoblastoma. Hepatoblastoma is a malignant liver neoplasm in infants and children and composed of tissue resembling fetal or mature liver cells or bile ducts. Incidence is 1 in 1.5 million. It usually presents with abdominal mass. This is most commonly diagnosed up to age 3. Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) commonly is elevated, but if not, prognosis is bad. Surgery, chemotherapy and transplant can be effective. Read more...
Hepatoblastoma. Liver cancers are very rare in kids (<2 cases per million annually), but they do happen. Most common form is hepatoblastoma, followed by hepatocellular carcinoma. Inherited syndromes are thought to be the main risk factors for the development of liver cancer in childhood. Parents' exposures are not clearly defined. Read more...

What does metastatic liver cancer mean?

Sometimes cancer. Can spread to liver. Typically cancers that occur (primary site) in GI tract, such as colon, stomach, etc, spread to regional lymph nodes and then to liver. But cancers from other sites, such as breast, prostate, lung, skin, and really any organ, can spread to liver. If the cancer starts in the liver and spread to other organs, it can be metastatic liver cancer too. Read more...

What are treatments for liver cancer?

Treatment varies. Is the cancer primary or metastatic? What is the type of the liver cancer? These two primary questions need to be clarify first as treatment approach varies depending on the above. Read more...
Multiple. There are multiple treatments. Liver resection is the traditional approach. Other treatments include ablative destruction of the tumor with heat or electrical energy. Chemotherapy is also a treatment. This could be either whole body (systemic) chemo or liver directed (through a hepatic arterial infusion pump or through a endovascular procedure) ... Read more...