Signs and symptoms of Liver Cancer

By  , Expert Content
Jan 19, 2013

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The signs and symptoms of primary liver cancer can be variable, especially in the initial stages. Liver cancer grows slowly over time and if it is not treated it can spread more deeply into the liver, to surrounding areas, nearby lymph nodes and even to distant organs (bones and lungs). The primary liver cancers usually arise from hepatocytes (liver cells).

Early Symptoms of Liver Cancer: In the early stages a person with liver cancer usually does not have any specific symptoms. Pain is a common symptom in many cancers but it not an early symptom of liver cancer. In a person with liver cancer pain indicates that the disease may be well established.

Common Symptoms of Liver Cancer: As the cancer grows, it causes symptoms such as pain in the abdomen, swollen abdomen (bloating), weight loss, loss of appetite. Some of the common symptoms which occur liver cancer grows may include:

  • weight loss
  • loss of appetite
  • feeling of abdominal fullness
  • pain the upper part of abdomen
  • nausea and vomiting
  • general weakness and fatigue
  • an enlarged liver
  • abdominal swelling (due to accumulation of fluid) jaundice
  • fever.

These are some of the signs and symptoms of liver cancer. Every patient may not have all the symptoms. Many other diseases and other health problems can also cause these symptoms. Hence if you have symptoms of suggestive of liver disease consult a doctor. If your doctor suspects liver cancer based on your symptoms he will recommend tests to confirm the diagnosis.

Patients with cirrhosis of liver who develop sudden worsening of the disease such as ascites (abdominal fluid and swelling), jaundice (yellow color of the skin), or muscle wasting should consult a doctor. It can be due to liver cancer. If you have risk factor/factors for liver cancer go for regular tests. Screening tests can identify liver cancer at an early stage. Prognosis and response to treatment is better in early stages of liver cancer.


Read more articles on Liver Cancer.


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