How can liver cancer be treated?
The treatment process of liver cancer depends on the types, growth and spread of the cancer in your body. The doctor also consider your general health condition and preferences before deciding the most suitable treatment process for you. Liver cancer treatment options may include:
The surgery for liver cancer is also known as a liver resection. In this method, the doctor will remove a part of or your whole liver. The main types of surgery for liver cancer include:
– Liver transplant: Under this way of treatment, the disease liver is completely removed and replaced by a healthy liver from a donor. In case you are having cirrhosis or a large tumor, the doctor may consider liver transplant surgery. However, liver transplant is widely acknowledged to be linked to serious infection and health effects.
– Partial hepatectomy: A partial hepatectomy is a surgical procedure in which the doctor removes tumors in the liver. Removing certain portion containing cancers from the liver can reduce the risk of cancer cells spreading into other parts of the body.
– Tumor ablation: Ablation refers to treatments that destroy liver tumors without removing them. The doctor will use heat or cold to freeze or burn the liver in order to destroy cancer cells. Ablation can be used if it is impossible to remove the tumor.
– Embolization: Embolization is described as a procedure which injects substances to try to block or reduce the blood flow to cancer cells in the liver, which makes it harder for liver cancer to grow and spread to other areas within your body.
- Radiation Therapy
Radiation therapy refers to the use of high-energy rays to kill cancer cells. However, there are several negative effects of this treatment method on the patient’s health.
Chemotherapy (chemo) refers to the treatment in which drugs are used to destroy cancer cells. In this method, anti-cancer drugs will be injected into the patient’s vein or taken by mouth. After entering the bloodstream, these drug will move to all parts of the body, destroying cancerous cells. Unfortunately, liver cancer resists the majority of chemo drugs, making chemo not an effective solution.
- Targeted therapy
Similar to thermotherapy, targeted therapy is related to the injection of drugs into the bloodstream. While standard chemotherapy affects all cells within your body, targeted therapy only have effects on cancer cells. This method of treatment aims to interfere with specific molecules which are linked to tumor growth to prevent the development and spread of the disease.
How to prevent the cancer of liver?
There is no sure way to completely prevent this serious disease. However, you are suggested to avoid important risk factors that have proved to link to liver cancer.
– Preventing viral hepatitis
It is largely known that the most considerable risk factor for liver cancer is chronic infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV). Consequently, one of the most effective way to reduce the risk of developing liver cancer is to protect yourself from being infected with those viruses. Hepatitis B can be avoided by the hepatitis B vaccine, which provides humans with at least 90 percent protection. By contrast, there is no vaccine for hepatitis C. You can prevent it by practicing safe sex and avoid IV drug use.
– Preventing cirrhosis
Figures have shown that at least 80% of people who are diagnosed with liver cancer also suffer from cirrhosis. That’s why you should take prompt action to keep yourself away from getting involved with cirrhosis. Stop smoking and drinking, avoiding exposure to cancer-causing poisonous chemicals or aflatoxins in poorly stored food and grains.
– Controlling weight
Overweight and obesity are the causes of fat deposited in the liver, resulting in a health condition called NAFLD, which are known to increase risk of liver cancer. Try to maintain a healthy weight by doing physical activities regularly and practice a proper eating diet.