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Health Information For Parents
The liver is the body’s largest solid organ. It has many jobs, including:
can form if cells in the liver grow in a way they shouldn’t.
Liver tumors can be benign (not cancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
Benign tumors can happen at different ages. Some babies might be born with one. Others form early in life, but might not be found until later. Types of benign liver tumors include:
Malignant tumors happen less often than benign tumors. The most common types of liver cancer are:
The cause of many malignant liver tumors isn’t known. But some health conditions make it more likely for a child to develop one.
Hepatoblastoma is more likely to happen in boys and in kids with:
Hepatocellular carcinoma is more common in children who have:
Surgery to remove a tumor usually is the best and most effective treatment for children with benign or malignant liver tumors.
Sometimes doctors can just keep an eye on benign tumors if they don’t cause serious symptoms. If a benign tumor gets very large or causes a problem, a surgeon will remove it. When this happens, usually no other treatment is needed.
For a malignant liver tumor:
In some cases, a child with a malignant liver tumor may need a liver transplant.
When your child needs treatment for a tumor, it can feel overwhelming. But you’re not alone. To find support, talk to anyone on the care team or a hospital social worker. Many resources are available to help you and your child get through this difficult time.
You also can find information and support online at:
Radioembolization is a procedure used to treat some kinds of liver tumors. A radioactive material works on the tumor, not the healthy tissue around it.
Hepatoblastoma is a rare type of cancer that affects the liver but rarely spreads beyond it. Most cases are in children younger than 3.
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a type of liver cancer. It’s treated by a health care team of specialists in many areas.
A rhabdoid tumor of the liver is a cancer that often spreads quickly to other parts of the body. Most of these very rare tumors happen in babies and toddlers.
If your child needs a liver transplant, you’re probably feeling lots of emotions. Fortunately, most kids who have liver transplants go on to live normal, healthy lives.
Liver function tests can help doctors see if the liver has been damaged. They also can help diagnose infections and monitor medications that can cause liver-related side effects.
Undifferentiated embryonal sarcoma of the liver (UESL) is a rare kind of liver cancer that happens mostly in children.
When kids get cancer, it can often be treated and cured. Find out more in this article for kids.
Get the basics on cancer and cancer treatments in this article.
Chemotherapy is a big word for treatment with medicines used to help people who have cancer. This medicine kills the cancer cells that are making the person sick.
If your liver isn’t working properly, it can affect your overall health. Find out why doctors do liver function tests and what’s involved for teens.
The digestive process starts even before the first bite of food. Find out more about the digestive system and how our bodies break down and absorb the food we eat.
It’s unusual for teens to have cancer, but it can happen. The good news is that most will survive and return to their everyday lives. Learn about how to cope if you or someone you know has cancer.
Chemotherapy (chemo) is treatment with medicines that stop the growth of cancer cells. Find out how chemo works and what to expect when getting treatment.
Different kinds of childhood cancer have different signs, symptoms, treatments, and outcomes. But today, most kids with cancer get better.
It’s sneaky, it’s silent, and it can permanently harm your liver. Read this article for more information on hepatitis.
Hepatitis, an infectious liver disease, is more contagious than HIV. Find out about the different types of hepatitis.
Hepatitis B can move from one person to another through blood and other body fluids. For this reason, people usually get it through unprotected sex or by sharing needles.
Hepatitis B virus (HBV) spreads from person to person through blood or other body fluids. A vaccine is approved for people of all ages to prevent HBV infection.
The hepatitis C virus (HCV) spreads through blood or other body fluids, and can lead to cirrhosis or liver cancer. The most common way people become infected is by sharing drug paraphernalia.
Chemotherapy (chemo) is treatment with medicines that stop the growth of cancer cells.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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