Hepatitis C infection and hepatocellular carcinoma
- Cite this article as:
- Colombo, M. Curr hepatitis rep (2003) 2: 166. doi:10.1007/s11901-003-0019-9
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Hepatitis C virus causes liver cancer by establishing chronic inflammation and proliferation of liver cells and by interacting with cell genes involved in liver cell regulation. Surveillance with abdominal ultrasound of chronically infected cirrhotic patients is the only realistic approach for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) treatment improvement, because it allows for detection of small, better treatable tumors. Liver transplantation is the best therapeutic option in accurately selected patients, providing 5-year survival rates of 75%. Similar figures have also been achieved in selected patients with a small HCC treated with percutaneous interstitial ablation. However, these patients remain at lifelong risk of tumor recurrence.