People with hepatitis B, C, cirrhosis, abuse of alcohol, beer, stimulants or family members with liver cancer need periodic screening to prevent the disease.
Liver cancer ranks first among cancers, accounting for a fifth of the more than 25,000 cancer deaths each year. In Vietnam, according to Globocan 2020, liver cancer surpasses lung cancer and breast cancer in morbidity and mortality, with more than 26,000 new cases annually. The number of deaths from liver cancer leads with more than 25,000 cases, accounting for 21% of all cancer deaths.
Liver cancer is difficult to treat, advanced methods have high costs. In the early stages, the disease usually has no symptoms. Screening is how doctors monitor liver health for symptoms.
Doctor Ha Hai Nam, Deputy Head of Department of Gastroenterology 1, K Hospital (Hanoi), said that people with liver diseases such as hepatitis B, C, cirrhosis, fatty liver… and people with money Family history of liver cancer is a high-risk group that needs screening as indicated. In particular, hepatitis B and hepatitis C viruses are the leading causes of primary hepatocellular carcinoma. “If you unfortunately have active hepatitis B and C, you need early treatment to avoid the risk of complications into liver cancer,” the doctor said.
For hepatitis due to autoimmune causes, accompanied by other autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes, basedow, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus erythematosus… it is necessary to treat autoimmune diseases to avoid complications. liver later.
People with obesity, diabetes, etc. need to be screened for diseases caused by blood sugar and blood fat when accumulated in the liver, leading to degenerative damage to liver cells, causing cirrhosis, and increasing the risk of cancer.
Alcohol and beer have the ability to promote oncogenes to develop rapidly, leading to cancer. In addition, alcohol damages liver cells. “When drinking too much alcohol, the liver’s detoxification function will be overloaded, liver cells are severely damaged, forming scar tissue, fibrosis leading to disease,” the doctor said.
Aflatoxin contamination by molds leads to cancer. This is the most powerful liver cancer-causing toxin today. Mold often appears in foods that are preserved, stored in a hot, humid environment such as rice, peanuts, soybeans, wheat, corn… Fresh foods that are not thoroughly processed often contain many types of flukes. large liver fluke, small liver fluke…), including some flukes that, when entering the body, will destroy the liver and cause liver cancer.
People who abuse drugs and chemicals also cause liver damage. Some drugs and chemicals, if used or exposed for a long time, can lead to liver cancer such as thorotrast (formerly used for diagnostic imaging), vinyl chloride (used in the plastic industry). .
Stimulants such as tobacco and coffee, if used in large quantities, for a long time can lead to liver diseases, including liver cancer.
The doctor said that the development of science and technology brings more hope to liver cancer patients, helping to improve the prognosis of the disease. However, people do not have a sense of periodic examination and screening to detect disease early. About 70% of patients who come to the hospital for examination are found to be at a late stage, unable to intervene.
Doctors recommend that people who have not been vaccinated against hepatitis B virus should get vaccinated as soon as possible to avoid the risk of infection later. High-risk groups need to be examined, tested for liver cancer index (Alphafetoprotein – AFP) and liver morphological ultrasound to assess the risk. Then, if in doubt, the doctor will conduct some other tests to confirm the diagnosis without necessarily inserting a biopsy needle into the liver to confirm cancer.