Medical Awareness >>   Liver Cancer

Liver Cancer


The liver can be affected by liver cancer, either primarily, which arises in the liver or secondarily (metastatic), which appears in other parts of the body and later spreads to the liver. Primary liver cancer is mainly due to hepatitis caused by contagious viruses predisposing to liver cancer. 

Since the liver comprises several different cells, several different types of cancers can be formed there. Some are noncancerous, and some are cancerous and can spread to other parts of the body. These tumours have different purposes and are treated uniquely. One's recovery depends on the type of tumour one has.

The more prevalent noncancerous tumours of the liver like Cysts, Lipoma, Fibroma and Leiomyoma are not treated like liver cancer. However, they may need to be removed surgically if they cause pain or bleeding. Liver cancers include:

  • Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC)
  • Cholangiocarcinoma


Liver cancer typically doesn't have initial or inexplicit symptoms. Gradual symptoms could be:

  • Pain, swelling, or soreness in the upper right abdomen section
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Jaundice 
  • Itching 
  • Swollen legs

In the advanced stage, symptoms may involve fever, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, weakness, confusion, pain in the left side of the abdomen, and the development of skin lesions.


It is challenging to cure liver cancer. Primary liver cancer is seldom detectable early when it is most treatable. Since it has already spread, secondary (metastatic) liver cancer is hard to treat. Therefore, most treatment concentrates on making patients feel better and perhaps live longer.

Patients with early-stage tumours that can be removed via surgery have a chance of long-term survival. Sadly, maximum cases are inoperable upon diagnosis, either because the tumour is too high-level or the liver is too unhealthy to allow surgery. In some cases, chemotherapy is directly delivered into the liver to reduce tumour size, making surgery possible. This may also be done using ethanol instead. Patients in remission must be closely monitored for possible recurrence.

Fact Sheet

Frequency: Liver cancer is a leading cause of cancer mortality globally, responsible for more than 7,00,000 deaths each year.

PGC Resolution: Controlling existing cases, spreading information and awareness, and advancing the treatment of liver cancer in India.