The liver can regenerate, but certain risk factors — caused by our genetic or lifestyle — make liver cancer a prevalent and increasingly common form of cancer, at a time when cases of most other types of cancer are decreasing.
Changes have been made to tackle this issue, but the lack of available treatment options for liver cancer, and in particular hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) —the most common form of liver cancer — pose a great challenge. Many cases of the disease are diagnosed at an advanced stage once chances of survival are significantly reduced.
Fortunately, technology and advanced diagnostic tools have transformed the way liver cancer is diagnosed. The latest developments in screening methods, such as using ultrasound imaging in combination with measuring AFP levels twice a year, in the HCC high-risk population have become more efficient, especially for hepatitis B and C carriers, or patients who have liver cirrhosis.
Our ambition is to continue making advances in the field of liver cancer, so that we can improve the lives of those affected by it. We believe people with HCC deserve more options, and our hope for the future is to be a helping hand for those who need it.
Despite great advances in screening, vaccinations and treatment development, further research and understanding is needed to curb the spread of liver cancer. Indeed, unlike other types of cancer, which may be caused by a small number of clearly defined genetic mutations, liver cancer has complex mechanisms that often vary from patient to patient and depend on the different disease stages. For instance, targeted therapy and immunotherapy may work for some patients but not others.
Our focus lies in understanding why so that can develop treatment solutions tailored to patients' individual tumours.
Do you know what can cause HCC? Find out about hepatitis B and C and other risk factors.
How did Taiwan halve the incidence of HCC in a decade? 72% of cases are diagnosed in Asia, where big steps have been taken to address this challenge.
Find out how Dan has been able to stay positive since his diagnosis with liver cancer, and see the light at the end of the tunnel.
As a healthy, active person, Mr Yan was completely surprised when diagnosed with HCC. Hear how he has been able to remain hopeful.
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