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Liver Cancer

Liver Cancer Treatment

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Liver Cancer Treatment

Liver is the crucial organs in the human body located in the right upper part of the abdomen. It performs wide range of functions comprising of regulating the storage of glycogen, RBC decomposition, and detoxification production of hormones and bile that helps in digestion.

Liver Cancer can be categorized in two types.

  • Primary Liver Cancer : Liver cancer that begins in the liver cells is called as Primary liver cancer. This further has two types.
    • Hepatocellular Carcinoma - is the most common type of liver cancer and starts from the main cells of the liver. People affected with cirrhosis are most prone to have HCC.
    • Cholangiocarcinoma - cancer that starts in the cells lining the bile duct and angiosarcoma, which is a rare liver cancer starting in the blood vessels.
  • Secondary Liver Cancer : The cancer that has starts in other parts of the body but has spread to liver also called as Secondary Liver Cancer also known as Metastasis.

Signs and Symptoms of Liver Cancer

In the initial stage, liver cancer does not show any signs and symptoms. But once it is obvious, the patient may show the following symptoms and signs.

  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pain in upper abdomen
  • Generalized weakness and fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Yellow discolouration of skin and eyes
  • Abdominal swelling

Staging for Liver Cancer

After diagnosis of the liver cancer, it is crucial to determine the stage of cancer in order to plan appropriate treatment in time. There are 4 stages of the liver cancer:

  • Stage I : Single cancer tumor confined to liver and has not spread to other parts of body.
  • Stage II : Cancer with either single tumor that has spread to blood vessels or multiple tumors of less than 5 cm that has not invade blood vessels.
  • Stage III : It has 3 sub stages:
    • Cancer with more than single tumor having size of more than 5 cm but has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts
    • Cancer has spread to either hepatic or portal vein but has not invaded lymph nodes or any other parts.
    • Cancer has spread to adjacent organs like gall bladder but has not spread to lymph nodes.
  • Stage IV : It has 2 sub stages:
    • Cancer with more than one tumor of variable size that has spread to blood vessels, lymph nodes and adjacent organs of the liver but has not affected other body parts.
    • Cancer of variable size which has spread to blood vessels and organs nearby the liver. It may or may not have invaded the lymph nodes but has spread to other organs like lungs and bones.

Causes and Risk Factors

The exact cause of the liver cancer is unknown but like other cancers there are certain risk factors that may lead to cause liver cancer. These are

  • Chronic infection caused by HBV or HCV virus
  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Inherited liver disease like Wilson's disease and hemochromatosis
  • Diabetes
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Excessive consumption of alcohol
  • Fatty liver disease

Treatment Options for Liver Cancer

  • Surgical Procedures
    There are mainly two types of surgical procedures for treatment of Liver Cancer
    • Partial hepatectomy: This surgery is required in cases of small tumors and when the liver is functioning good. In this surgery, only the tumor and the small portion of the healthy tissue around the tumor is removed since the liver has the tendency to re grow.
    • Liver transplant surgery: Liver transplant is the procedure to remove the diseased liver and replacing it by a healthy and normally functioning liver from the deceased or live donor.
  • Non-surgical Procedures
    • Chemotherapy: Strong anti- cancer drugs are injected in the hepatic artery which is then blocked so as to cut the blood supply to the cancer cells which makes them shrink and ultimately die.
    • Radiation therapy: By using the high powered energy beams, the cancer cells are targeted to shrink and die. The new advance technique called as stereotactic radiotherapy can be used to treat liver cancer.
    • Targeted drug therapy: The drugs that interfere with the tumor function and inhibit the advancing spread of carcinoma are used to control the cancer.
    • Cryoablation: This is a less popular method which entails killing the cancerous cells using an instrument called cryoprobe that delivers nitrogen which freezes and kills the cells.
    • Radio Frequency ablation: This procedure includes insertion of the needles to reach tumor through small incision in the abdomen and then heating the needle at very high temperature with an electric current to destroy the targeted cancerous cells.

Are you a Candidate?

If you are diagnosed to have liver cancer, and are suffering from any of the above mentioned symptoms, then you should seek the medical attention at the earliest and the treatment for liver cancer should be initiated after requisite diagnostic evaluation and assessment.

Cost of Liver Cancer Treatment

India is one of the most affordable places for Liver cancer treatment across the globe. The cost of liver cancer treatment in India is less than a one sixth of what it costs in western countries to get the same treatment done.

Here's a look at the approximate costs of liver cancer treatment in India:

Sr No Name of Procedure Cost in India (USD)
1 Cancer Evaluation Package 800 - 1200
2 PET Scan 300 - 500
3 Partial Hepatectomy 4000 - 5500
4 Liver Transplant Surgery 35,000 - 40,000
5 Chemotherapy 1000 - 1500 per cycle
6 Radiation Therapy 3500 - 5500
7 Immunotherapy 1500 - 2500
8 Cryoablation/Thermal Ablation 3500 - 4500
6 Radiofrequency Ablation 3500 - 5500

Expected Outcomes and Results

The patient can return to normal lifestyle within 6 months after the surgery. Healthy diet, regular exercise and proper medications add on to the speedy recovery and help lead a healthy and active life ahead.

Recovery Timeline

Hospitalization of 5-6 days is required after surgery. One may feel pain and discomfort after the surgery which is normal and usually controlled with medications. However, recovery after liver transplant surgery is quite slow and long process. It may take about 6 months to resume your normal daily activities.

Patient would need to stay at the hospital for around 6 weeks after the surgery and another 4-6 weeks in India before going back. So, a total stay of around 3 months is required in India to get the liver cancer treatment in India.

Why MedicoExperts?

We at MedicoExperts believe in assisting you to get well-being with complete information about liver cancer treatment in India. Being thorough with all the benefits from the appropriate treatment option for cancer, will help you make an informed choice.

We also provide you a platform for online video consultation so as to connect you with our chosen top oncologists in India at the best liver cancer hospital in India for all your concerns and queries regarding cancer treatment. We assure you hassle free arrangements for your medical travel, evaluations, treatment, recover and stay in India. With the expertise of MedicoExperts, you can be rest assured about your complete safety, comfort and wonderful experience of medical tourism in India.

For more details and information, you may send your medical history and diagnostic reports to enquiry@medicoexperts.com for a swift response from our team.

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