Secondary liver cancer

Secondary liver cancer

What is secondary liver cancer?

Secondary cancer in the liver is a cancer that started in another part of the body, but has now spread (metastasised) to the liver. This means it is advanced cancer. Secondary cancer in the liver is much more common than primary liver cancer in Australia.

Secondary cancer in the liver may be diagnosed:

  • at the same time as the original cancer (called the primary cancer)
  • soon after the primary cancer is found
  • months or years after the primary cancer has been treated
  • before the primary cancer is found
  • when tests can’t find where the cancer started – this is known as cancer of unknown primary (CUP).

If you have secondary cancer in the liver, it may be useful to read about primary liver cancer or CUP.

Many cancers can spread to the liver. The most likely cancer to spread to the liver is bowel cancer. This is because the blood supply from the small bowel is connected to the liver through the portal vein. Melanoma and cancer in the breast, oesophagus, stomach, pancreas, ovary, kidney or lung can also spread to the liver.


The liver

The liver is the largest organ inside the body. It is part of the digestive system and is found next to the stomach on the right side of the abdomen under the ribs. The gall bladder sits under the liver, and the pancreas sits under the stomach. These organs work together to help the body process food.

The digestive system

The digestive system

How the liver works

The two main sections of the liver are the right and left lobes. Blood flows into the liver from the hepatic artery and the portal vein. Blood in the hepatic artery comes from the heart and carries oxygen, while blood in the portal vein comes from the stomach and carries nutrients and substances such as medicines or alcohol to the liver.

The liver does many important jobs. These include:

  • breaking down drugs and alcohol, and getting rid of toxins
  • producing bile to help dissolve fat so it can be easily digested
  • storing and releasing sugars (glucose) as needed
  • storing nutrients
  • making proteins to help blood clot and to balance fluid in the body.

Unlike other internal organs, a healthy liver can usually repair itself if injured. It can continue to function even when only a small part is working and may grow back to its normal size in 6–8 weeks.

Bile is made in the liver and stored in the gall bladder. A series of tubes called bile ducts carry bile between the liver and gall bladder. The common bile duct carries bile from the liver and gall bladder to the bowel, where it helps to break down fats.


Click on the icon below to download a PDF booklet on Liver Cancer


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Instructions for downloading and reading EPUB files

Apple devices

The iBooks application must be installed on your Apple device before you can read the EPUB.
Different ways to download an EPUB file to your Apple device:

  • email EPUB files to yourself and transfer the attachment to iBooks.
  • copy EPUB files into DropBox (or a similar service) and use the DropBox app to send them to iBooks.
  • open EPUB files directly from Mobile Safari and open them in iBooks, where they are saved automatically by downloading the EPUB from the website.

Need more help? Visit: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4059

Kobo

To download an EPUB file to your Kobo from a Windows computer:

  • download and save the EPUB directly onto your desktop.
  • connect your Kobo to your computer using the USB cable and tap “Connect” on your eReader.
  • select “Open folder to view files” to view the contents of your Kobo.
  • navigate to where you have stored your EPUB file in “Finder”, in documents or downloads, and drag and drop it into the Kobo window. You can now disconnect your Kobo to read the eBook.

To download an EPUB to your Kobo from a Mac:

  • download and save the EPUB directly onto your desktop.
  • connect your Kobo to your computer using the USB cable and tap “Connect” on your eReader.
  • open your “Finder” application.
  • select “Kobo eReader” from the listed devices to view the contents of your Kobo.
  • navigate to where you have stored your EPUB file in “Finder”, probably in documents or downloads, and drag and drop it into the Kobo window. You can now disconnect your Kobo to read the eBook.

Turn on your Kobo and your EPUB will be located in “eBooks”, while a PDF will be located in “Documents”.
Need more information? Visit: http://www.kobo.com/help/koboaura/response/?id=3784&type=3

Sony Reader

To download an EPUB file on your Sony Reader™:

  • ensure you have already installed the Reader™ Library for PC/Mac software
  • select the eBook you want from our website and click the link to download it.
  • connect the Reader™ to your computer.
  • open the Reader™ Library software and click “Library” in the left-hand pane and select the eBook to view it.

Need more help? Visit: https://au.readerstore.sony.com/apps_and_devices/

Amazon Kindle 2nd Generation devices

EPUB files can’t be read on the Amazon Kindle™. However, like most eReaders, Kindle™ 2nd Generation devices are able to display PDFs. We recommend that you download the PDF version of this booklet if you would like to read it on a Kindle™.
To transfer a PDF to your Kindle™ via USB cable from your computer or Mac:

  • download the PDF directly onto your computer.
  • connect the USB cable to your computer’s USB port, and the micro USB end of the cable to your Kindle™. Note: the Kindle™ won’t be available as a reading device while it is connected to your computer until it has been disconnected.
  • open the Kindle™ drive and several folders will appear inside. The “Documents” folder is where you will need to copy or drag the PDF to.
  • safely eject your Kindle™ from your computer and unplug the USB cable. Your content will appear on the Home Screen.

Kindle also provides a Kindle Personal Documents Service that allows users to send documents as an attachment directly to your eReader. For more information on this service, visit http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=help_search_1-1?ie=UTF8&nodeId=200767340&qid=1395967989&sr=1-1
For more information on accessing a PDF on your Kindle™, visit www.amazon.com/manageyourkindle, log in to your account and click on Personal Document Settings.
Need more help? Visit https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=200375630

Android and PC

You can also download and open eBooks on Android devices and PCs with appropriate apps or software installed. Suitable eReader apps for Android include Google Play Books, FBReader and Moon+ Reader. Suitable software for PCs include Calibre and Adobe Digital Editions.


This information was last reviewed in June 2018
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