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Cancer liver II


Definition of liver cancer: Primary liver cancer is cancer that forms in the tissues of the liver. Secondary liver cancer is cancer that spreads to the liver from another part of the body.
Estimated new cases and deaths from liver and intrahepatic bile ductcancer in the United States in 2009:
New cases: 22,620
Deaths: 18,160

Anatomy of the liver; drawing shows the right and left  front lobes of the liver, bile ducts, gallbladder, stomach, spleen, pancreas, colon, and small intestine. The two back lobes of the liver are not shown.This booklet is only about cancer that begins in the liver. It isn't about cancer that spreads to the liver from somewhere else.
It's common for cancer to spread (
metastasize) to the liver from the colon, lungs, breasts, or other parts of the body. When this happens, the disease is not liver cancer. Instead, the cancer in the liver is named for the organ or the tissue in which it began. For example, colon cancer that spreads to the liver is metastatic colon cancer. It is not liver cancer.

In the United States, metastatic cancer in the liver is far more common than primary liver cancer.

People with metastatic cancer in the liver have different treatment options than those with primary liver cancer.


Cancer begins in cells, the building blocks that make up tissues. Tissues make up the organs of the body.
Normal cells grow and divide to form new cells as the body needs them. When normal cells grow old or get damaged, they die, and new cells take their place.
Sometimes, this process goes wrong. New cells form when the body doesn't need them, and old or damaged cells don't die as they should. The buildup of extra cells often forms a mass of tissue called a growth, nodule, or tumor.
Growths in the liver can be benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer). Benign tumors are not as harmful as malignant tumors:
Benign tumors:
    • are rarely a threat to life
    • can be removed and usually don't grow back
    • don't invade the tissues around them
    • don't spread to other parts of the body

  • Malignant growths:
    • may be a threat to life
    • sometimes can be removed but can grow back
    • can invade and damage nearby tissues and organs (such as the stomach or intestine)
    • can spread to other parts of the body
Most primary liver cancers begin in hepatocytes (liver cells). This type of cancer is called hepatocellular carcinoma or malignant hepatoma.

Liver cancer cells can spread by breaking away from the original tumor. They mainly spread by entering blood vessels, but liver cancer cells can also be found in lymph nodes. The cancer cells may attach to other tissues and grow to form new tumors that may damage those tissues.

tags:Benign tumors,Malignant growths,colon cancer. It is not liver cancer,hepatocellular carcinoma or malignant hepatoma.Definition of liver cancer

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