Medical Tourism- What are the Symptoms of Liver Cancer & Their Treatment

Posted by shauryaverma01 on October 12th, 2017

Liver cancer is hard to detect during the early stages. As a result, it requires a further diagnosis to evaluate and determine the extent of liver damage.

Common Symptoms of Liver Cancer

  • Unplanned weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Feeling bloated or too full with little intake of meals
  • Repetitive nausea or vomiting
  • Liver enlargement on the right side under the ribs
  • Spleen enlargement on the left side under the ribs
  • Abdominal pains or near the right shoulder blade
  • Fluid coagulation or swelling in the abdomen
  • Itching
  • Signs of jaundice- yellowing of the skin and eyes


Besides these common symptoms, other identifiable issues like fever, enlarged veins on the stomach easily visible under the skin, bruising along the abdomen or bleeding.

Diagnosis of Liver Cancer:

It is often recommended to take one the following tests each 6-12 months, depending on an individual's case.

  • Alpha-fetoprotein blood test
  • Imaging tests- Ultrasound, CT scan, MRI scan
  • Removing a sample of liver tissue for testing

In case of a tumor in the liver, hormonal seepage may affect other organs causing- Hypercalcemia, Hypoglycemia, Gynecomastia, Erythrocytosis, high cholesterol levels.

Determining the extent of cancer in the liver before recommending treatment

After the diagnosis of liver cancer, a liver cancer specialist moves to the next phase of determining the stage of liver cancer where he/she ascertains the size and location of the cancer and discover if it has spread.

The extent of damage caused to the liver by cancer is denoted in two methods- either by using Roman numerals I to IV or using letters A through D. Whenever your doctor goes over the treatment options with you, he or she will use the treatment options and prognosis, he or she will use one of those methods.

Treatment options

Surgery

Surgical methods are used to treat liver cancer that involves either removing the tumor or performing a successful liver transplant surgery.

Removing the tumor- An operation may be possible if your liver function is good and the tumor is smaller in size. The doctor will remove the liver cancer along with a small portion of the healthy liver tissue.

Liver transplant surgery- The diseased liver is transplanted with a healthy liver from a donor.

Radiation therapy

Using high-powered energy from X-rays and protons, the beams are carefully directed to the liver. This destroys cancer cells and shrinks the tumor mass.

Immunotherapy

This treatment uses certain parts of a patient's immune system to fight cancer in one of the two ways- either by stimulating the patient's own immune system or by supplying proteins.

Immunotherapy is gaining a lot of success around the globe and it is one of the popularly used successful methods for liver cancer treatment in India.

Localized treatments

Localized treatments for liver cancer treatment include-

  • heating or freezing cancer cells
  • injecting alcohol into the tumor
  • injecting chemotherapy drugs into the liver
  • placing beads filled with radiation in the liver
  • Cost of liver transplant

Liver transplant cost in India, is around ,672 and when compared to the US cost of 7,100, Add to that Indian professionals, services and facilities at par with hospitals across the globe, if not better and it becomes an easy choice to travel to this eastern country for a life saving operation.

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