What is liver cancer?
Primary liver cancer starts in the liver. The different types are
- hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC)
If primary liver cancer isn’t found in its early stages, or if treatment is unsuccessful, it can spread and become secondary.
Liver cancer symptoms
Primary liver cancer doesn’t tend to cause symptoms in the early stages, but they may appear as the cancer grows or becomes advanced. Secondary liver cancers may cause similar symptoms.
- Symptoms can include
- weakness and tiredness (fatigue)
- pain in the upper right side of the abdomen
- severe abdominal pain
- appetite loss and feeling sick (nausea)
- weight loss
- yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice)
- pale bowel motions
- swelling of the abdomen (ascites)
Liver cancer statistics
- About 1,400 people in Australia are diagnosed with primary liver cancer each year
- Liver cancer is more than twice as common in men as women
- Average age at diagnosis it 66
- Secondary cancer in the liver occurs about 20 times more often than primary liver cancer.
- About 28,000 people in Australia are diagnosed with secondary cancer in the liver every year.
The aim of this information is to help you understand about liver cancer. We cannot advise you about the best treatment for you. You need to discuss this with your doctors. However, we hope this information will answer some of your questions and help you think about the questions you would like to ask your doctors or other health carers.