What is liver cancer?
The abnormal growth of cells in your liver is liver cancer. Your liver lies on the right side above your abdomen and stomach, just below the diaphragm. The liver is responsible for filtering the blood that flows in the body by converting the minerals and nutrients into chemicals that are ready-to-use. The liver also removes waste products and toxins from the blood and purifies it.
Basically, cancer occurring in other parts of the body and then spreading to the liver is more common than cancer developing in the liver. This type of cancer is known as metastatic cancer and is named after the organ from which it began. For example, if cancer started in the colon and spread to the liver, it would be called metastatic colon cancer.
Types of liver cancer
Cancer that lives in the liver may have several types such as:
- Hepatocellular carcinoma
- Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma
Causes of liver cancer
There are a number of causes of liver cancer that may include:
Infections and diseases
It is possible that infections such as chronic hepatitis and other underlying diseases cause liver cancer.
Sometimes, mutations may occur in your DNA that can change the metabolism. As a result, the cells may begin to grow abnormally and eventually develop into a mass of cancerous cells; tumors.
Factors that increase the risk of liver cancer include:
- Chronic infections with Hepatitis B or C virus
Any chronic infections with the hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV) can significantly increase your chance of developing liver cancer.
This is a permanent liver condition in which a scar forms on your liver tissue. It worsens with time increasing your risk of developing liver cancer.
- Liver diseases
A number of liver diseases such as Wilson’s disease, alpha -1-antitrypsin deficiency, tyrosinemia, and hemochromatosis can increase your risk of liver cancer.
If you are suffering from diabetes, you have a greater chance of developing liver cancer as compared to those who do not have diabetes.
- Accumulation of fat in the liver
If your liver has accumulated fat, you have an increased chance of liver cancer.
- Intake of aflatoxins
Aflatoxins are basically produced by molds that may grow on crops that are poorly stored. If you intake foods that are made out of these contaminated crops with poisonous aflatoxins, you are most likely to get liver cancer.
- Excessive intake of alcohol
If you are drinking more than moderate amounts of alcohol regularly for a longer period of time, it may cause irreversible damage to your liver and thus increase your chances of developing liver cancer.
- Exposure to chemicals
Long term exposure to various chemical substances such as arsenic, vinyl chloride, and herbicides can cause liver cancer.
- Use of Synthetic steroid
If you are a long-term synthetic steroid user, know that your chance to acquire liver cancer increases.
- Your gender
You are more likely to get liver cancer if you are a man.
If you have more weight or are obese, you are more likely to get liver cancer.
Symptoms of liver cancer
The symptoms of liver cancer are usually not experienced by people in their early stages. But after they appear, the symptoms of liver cancer may include:
- Loss of weight and appetite
- A constant feeling of nausea and vomiting
- Fever and chills
- Pain in the upper abdomen due to an enlarged spleen
- Swelling and tenderness in the abdomen
- Swelling in legs
- Itchiness in body
- Yellowing of white areas in your eyes
- Night sweats
- White feces
- Loss of sexual desire
- Confusion and anxiety
- Development of skin lesions
Please visit your doctor as soon as you notice any of these signs or symptoms. It is always better for a cancer patient to get diagnosed in the early stages so that it can be prevented from spreading and becoming problematic. Detecting cancer early can also help to ensure an effective treatment.
How can you prevent liver cancer?
Avoid activities that may increase the risk of cirrhosis
The risk of getting cirrhosis increases with excessive drinking and obesity problems. Do not drink alcohol in excessive amounts in your routine. Limit your number of drinks. If you are a woman, take no more than 1 drink a day, while for men, make sure you do not take more than 2 drinks a day. Also, avoid eating too much to maintain a healthy weight. Exercise regularly and eat healthy so that you can cut down the number of calories you’ve intake.
Avoid getting hepatitis
In order to avoid hepatitis B, you can always choose to get vaccinated against it. The vaccine of hepatitis B can be taken at any age. Although hepatitis C has no vaccines so it should be avoided by:
- Always use clean needles while injecting any drugs.
- Always using sterilized tools while getting pierced or tattooed.
- Always knowing about the health of your sexual partner.
Treating liver cancer with LDN
Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) is significantly known for its wonders in treating cancers and other diseases. It can be used to treat liver cancer. People who have used LDN for treating liver cancer have experienced improvement. They said that the drug is probably the safest and cheapest method out there for treating liver cancer. You can always choose to get treated against your problems by LDN.
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