“Here At LaSalle, we always stress the importance of annual physical exams and proper follow-ups to screen for cancers and other conditions that increase the risk of liver cancer,” says Dr. Andrew Benin of LaSalle Medical Associates.
REDLANDS, CALIF. –October is Liver Cancer Awareness Month, and The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) aims to raise awareness about the warning signs of both types of liver cancer. The AACR notes that liver cancer is more prevalent in men than women, and it is more common among Asian/Pacific Islanders and American Indian/Alaska Natives.
Dr. Andrew Benin of LaSalle Medical Associates says, “According to the NIH the incidence of liver cancer will increase by more than 50 percent and the number of deaths is projected to increase by more than 55 percent between 2020 and 2040. This is exactly why here at LaSalle, we always stress the importance of annual physical exams and proper follow-ups to screen for cancers and other conditions that increase the risk of liver cancer such as hepatitis.”
“We encourage everyone to work on lifestyle modifications such as decreasing alcohol use, avoiding IV drug use, and limiting fatty foods. Ultimately, the best thing anybody can do for screening and prevention is to make an appointment and have a conversation with their healthcare provider. Early recognition of symptoms, proper physical examination, and swift intervention are the keys to survival.”
The two types of primary adult liver cancer are liver cells (hepatocellular carcinoma) and liver bile duct cancer (cholangiocarcinoma). People who have cirrhosis or hepatitis B or C are especially at risk, according to the AACR.
The National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program projects 41,210 new cases of liver and intrahepatic bile duct cancer in 2023, resulting in approximately 29,380 deaths. The five-year relative survival rate is only 21.6 percent.
Symptoms for both liver cell cancer and bile duct cancer include losing weight without trying, yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes (jaundice), and or white, chalky stools.
Symptoms unique to liver cell cancer are loss of appetite, upper abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, general weakness and fatigue, and abdominal swelling, Symptoms unique to bile duct cancer are intensely itchy skin, abdominal pain on the right side, below the ribs, fever, night sweats and dark urine.
“Early recognition of symptoms, proper physical examination, and swift intervention are the keys to survival. If you or a family member have any of these symptoms, see your doctor immediately or go to the emergency room,” said Dr. Benin.
LaSalle Medical Associates serves more than 350,000 patients in their clinics and statewide Independent Physicians Association Group (IPA). Patients are covered by Medi-Cal, Medicare, Covered California, Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Brand New Day, Molina, Care 1st, Health Net, and Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP).
For an appointment or more information about LaSalle Medical Associates, call 1-855-349-6019 or go online to LaSalleMedical.com.
LaSalle is also an Independent Practice Association (IPA) of independently contracted doctors, hospitals, and clinics, delivering high-quality patient care to over 350,000 patients in Fresno, Kings, Los Angeles, Madera, Riverside, San Bernardino and Tulare counties.