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Despite the overall rate of cancer deaths declining in the United States, the number of people diagnosed with liver cancer has continued to grow steadily for several decades. We understand that a liver cancer diagnosis can be one of the most frightening things you and your loved ones will experience. Mercy’s gastrointestinal cancer experts are dedicated to addressing your cancer needs from diagnosis to treatment to recovery.
Liver cancer is a type of intestinal cancer caused by cells in the liver growing out of control. However, cancer that spreads from another organ to the liver is more common than cancer that starts in the liver itself. Liver cancer is more difficult to diagnose in earlier stages than other types of cancer since signs and symptoms don’t usually appear until cancer has developed in size or spread to distant organs of the body.
The various types of liver cancer break down into two main categories: primary and secondary liver cancer.
When cancer starts in your liver, it’s called primary liver cancer. Those with liver damage (cirrhosis) are at increased risk of developing primary liver cancers. There are various types of primary liver cancer which include:
Secondary liver cancer, also known as metastatic liver cancer, occurs when cancer starts somewhere else in the body and spreads to the liver. Primary breast cancer, lung cancer and renal cancers are common cancer types that can end up in the liver.
According to the American Cancer Society, the most common causes of liver cancer are chronic infections with hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV). However, there are a handful of other genetic and lifestyle risk factors that can determine someone’s likelihood of getting liver cancer.
If you have cirrhosis or active HBV or HCV infection talk to your Mercy provider about ultrasound screening for liver cancer.
Signs and symptoms of liver cancer aren't prevalent in the early stages and usually don't appear until cancer has advanced or grown in size. If you experience one or more of these symptoms over a period of time, it’s best to talk to your Mercy doctor to see if a liver cancer screening is right for you.
As the cancerous tumor develops, signs of liver cancer may include:
If you’re experiencing symptoms of liver cancer, it can be overwhelming. Mercy is here to help with everything from diagnosis to treatment.
Learn about liver cancer diagnosis and treatment options.
At Mercy, we offer comprehensive testing services to diagnose all types of liver cancer, including:
At Mercy, we offer compassionate care for a variety of liver cancer treatment services, including: