There are different treatment options available for liver cancer. Once you are diagnosed with liver cancer, the medical team will conduct various diagnosis tests to determine the extent or stage of cancer. The results of these tests help the doctors to understand the size, the exact location of the tumour and the degree of spread of cancer. Imaging tests such as CTs, MRIs, or bone scans are used for staging liver cancer.
Liver cancer treatment options available for initial liver cancer depend on the degree (stage) of this disease along with your age, all-round health, and other specific health conditions. Read on to find out the various treatment options available for liver cancer.
One of the major options for the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma or any other type of liver cancer is surgery. Liver cancer is categorized on the basis of whether it is possible to be removed. For instance,
- Localized resectable cancer can be removed through surgery.
- Localized unresectable cancer is the kind that has not spread to the lymph nodes or any other distant organs, but still, it is not possible to be removed through surgery. This could be because several reasons like: the unaffected parts of your liver are not completely healthy; the cancer cells have spread across the liver or the tumour is dangerously close to the important arteries, veins or bile ducts.
- Cancer cells have spread till lymph nodes or any other organ away from the liver and thus, it is impossible to treat through surgery.
Partial hepatectomy refers to a surgical method of removing tumours from the liver. For performing such a resection surgery, the medical professional makes a cut under the ribcage, along the upper right abdomen. A USG is carried out to pinpoint the tumour(s). This diseased part of the patient’s liver is removed thereafter, along with a bit of the adjoining healthy tissue. This liver cancer treatment process can be carried out as a laparoscopic or even a robotic surgery procedure.
Liver transplantation might be a feasible choice for some patients battling liver cancer, if:
- The case is detected in the initial stage and has not spread
- The patient’s liver is already damaged or weak because of cancer or any other condition
- There is a donor at hand
- The patient’s all-round health is good and they meet other criteria
Freezing the tumour or Cryotherapy, coupled with Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA), utilizing radio waves for the destruction of the tumour, can also be used for treatment of certain patients. While radiation therapy might be carried out in several ways, it has constraints because of the low radiation tolerance of the liver. The goal of the therapy is to ease symptoms or relieve the pain in the liver by reducing the tumour.
These are a few treatment options that are available for the treatment of liver cancer. The suitable treatment option depends on the extent of liver damage that might have been caused due to cancer or any other condition,whether cancer has spread anywhere else in your body and other health factors.