The incidence of liver cancer has more than tripled since 1980. However, rates in young adults have recently begun to decline.

The Hinsdale, Illinois-based physician experts at Digestive Disease Associates treat patients with primary liver cancer. This means that a patient’s cancer has begun in the liver.

Types of primary liver cancer include (not an exhaustive list):

  • Hepatocellular carcinoma (hepatocellular cancer)
  • Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (bile duct cancer)
  • Angiosarcoma and hemangiosarcoma
  • Hepatoblastoma

In most cases, patients are diagnosed with secondary liver cancer, meaning that it did not begin in the liver, but has spread from somewhere else in the body.

In the early stages of liver cancer there are rarely symptoms. When symptoms do arise, however, they may include:

  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Feeling very full after a small meal
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Weakness/fatigue
  • Enlarged liver
  • Enlarged spleen
  • Itching
  • Pain in the abdomen or near the right shoulder blade
  • Swelling or fluid build-up in the abdomen
  • Jaundice (yellowish color of eyes and skin)

Treatment may include:

  • Surgery to remove part of the liver
  • Liver transplant surgery
  • Targeted treatments (heating or freezing cancer cells; injecting alcohol into the tumor; injecting chemotherapy drugs into the liver; placing radiation beads into the liver)
  • Radiation therapy
  • Targeted drug therapy
  • Chemotherapy

Note: This information shouldn’t take the place of a physician’s care. Please see your physician or Dr. Suman Kaur of Digestive Disease Associates with any questions or concerns: (630) 325-4255.