Liver cancer surgery

What is Liver cancer surgery?

Liver cancer occurs in the cells of the liver. Different types of cancer can be seen in the liver. The standard type of liver cancer is hepatocellular carcinoma. Other types include intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma and hepatoblastoma that are much less common.

Early-stage cancer is not easy to detect because it does not show any symptoms later on as the cancer progress to weight loss, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, weakness, yellow discoloration of the skin, chalky stool are some sign and symptoms indicating liver cancer.

Surgery for Liver Cancer

Surgery is the best chance to cure primary liver cancer. There are different types of surgery for early-stage liver cancer.

  • liver resection or lobectomy
  • liver transplant

Eligible candidates for primary liver Cancer Surgery

The surgeon will only consider the surgery if the cancer is limited to one liver area means at stage 0 or stage A from the BCLC staging system. An operation will not work if cancer has already spread.

Liver resection and lobectomy

Resection involves removing cancer and the surrounding tissues in the liver. The surgeon will recommend this only if the tumor is small, and the liver is healthy, cancer has not affected blood vessels.

The surgeon might remove a liver lobe, which is called a lobectomy or Hemi hepatectomy. In this case, the liver can grow and function normally if you don’t have cirrhosis or any other problem.

Fibro lamellar cancer is more likely to develop in people without liver disease, which means these kinds of people can have surgery.

Unfortunately, there is a chance of recurrence of liver cancer after resection that’s why this type of treatment is only recommended for small liver tumors.

In cirrhosis, the liver is unhealthy, so there is a risk of having liver failure after resection in people who have cirrhosis then a liver transplant might be the option.

Liver resection is a significant operation that skilled and experienced surgeons should only do. Bleeding, infection, blood clotting, pneumonia are some of the associated side effects of this procedure.

A Liver Transplant

A liver transplant is possible in people with hepatocellular liver cancer (HCC). You can have a liver transplant if you have less than three tumors in the liver or a single tumor less than 5 cm to restrict its growth for six months.

To have a liver transplant, you have to find a donor liver that matches your liver; due to this, you have to wait a lot; meantime, the surgeon might consider ablation or chemoembolization. Along with cirrhosis, you can’t have this major surgery.