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Liver Cancer (cont.)

Choice of Therapy for Primary Liver Cancer

There are many different types of therapy that are used for people with liver cancer. It is very important that the treatment is personalized for each individual since people and tumors may react differently. The main characteristics that help to decide which therapy is best and safest are the functional health of the liver; the size, number, and locations of the tumors; and the person's other medical problems and overall well-being. Because of the complexity of the decisions and the number of treatment options available for many patients, care is frequently coordinated through a multidisciplinary group of physicians specializing in hepatoma. This team of different specialists usually includes surgeons, oncologists, radiologists, gastroenterologists, radiation therapists, and pathologists.

One of the difficulties in treating liver cancers is that they frequently occur in people with damaged livers. This makes it harder for them to tolerate drugs or procedures that might be needed since side effects may become worse as the liver deteriorates. Therefore, in order to be safe, the options of how best to treat a tumor may be limited if the liver function is poor. Also, since many North-American patients are older and have diabetes, their overall health might prevent the safe application of certain therapies.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/20/2015

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