Standard treatment options:
Palliative chemotherapy with: Fluorouracil (5-FU).[1,2,3]Epirubicin, cisplatin, and 5-FU (ECF).[4,5]Epirubicin, oxaliplatin, and capecitabine (EOX).Cisplatin and 5-FU (CF).[7,3]Docetaxel, cisplatin, and 5-FU.Etoposide, leucovorin, and 5-FU (ELF).5-FU, doxorubicin, and methotrexate (FAMTX).
Trastuzumab, cisplatin, and either 5-FU or capecitabine in patients with HER2-positive tumors (3+ on immunohistochemistry [IHC] or fluorescence in situ...
Filtering harmful substances from the blood so they can be passed from the body in stools and urine.
Making bile to help digest fats from food.
Storing glycogen (sugar), which the body uses for energy.
See the following PDQ summaries for more information about liver (hepatocellular) cancer:
Liver (Hepatocellular) Cancer Screening
Adult Primary Liver Cancer Treatment
Childhood Liver Cancer Treatment
Liver cancer is not common in the United States.
Liver cancer is the fourth most common cancer and the third leading cause of cancer death in the world. In the United States, men, especially Chinese American men, have an increased risk of liver cancer. The number of new cases of liver cancer and the number of deaths from liver cancer continue to increase, especially among middle-aged black, Hispanic, and white men. People are usually older than 40 years when they develop this cancer.
Finding and treating liver cancer early may prevent death from liver cancer.
Being infected with certain types of the hepatitis virus can cause hepatitis and increase the risk of liver cancer.
Hepatitis is most commonly caused by the hepatitis virus. Hepatitis is a disease that causes inflammation (swelling) of the liver. Damage to the liver from hepatitis that lasts a long time can increase the risk of liver cancer.
There are six types of the hepatitis virus. Hepatitis A (HAV), hepatitis B (HBV), and hepatitis C (HCV) are the three most common types. These three viruses cause similar symptoms, but the ways they spread and affect the liver are different.
The Hepatitis A vaccine and the hepatitis B vaccine prevent infection with hepatitis A and hepatitis B. There is no vaccine to prevent infection with hepatitis C. If a person has had one type of hepatitis in the past, it is still possible to get the other types.
Hepatitis viruses include:
Hepatitis A is caused by eating food or drinking water infected with hepatitis A virus. It does not lead to chronic disease. People with hepatitis A usually get better without treatment.
Hepatitis B is caused by contact with the blood, semen, or other body fluid of a person infected with hepatitis B virus. It is a serious infection that may become chronic and cause scarring of the liver (cirrhosis). This may lead to liver cancer. Blood banks test all donated blood for hepatitis B, which greatly lowers the risk of getting the virus from blood transfusions.