Chief Medical Director, Calvary Estate Hospital, Benin City, Dr Osas Ikponwonsa, has warned that liver cancer could lead to other complications in the human body, if left untreated.
Ikponwonsa made this known in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Benin.
“A liver cancer is a cancer that begins in the cells of the liver. Primary liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma) tends to occur in livers damaged by birth defects, alcohol abuse or chronic infection with diseases.
“You cannot live without your liver, it has several important functions.
“The liver is responsible for producing bile, which is a substance that helps you digest fats, vitamins and other nutrients.
“This vital organ also stores nutrients such as glucose, so that you remain nourished when you are not eating, treatment options for liver cancer include surgery and liver transplant,” Ikponwonsa said.
He said liver cancer breaks down medications and toxins, destroying liver cells and interferes with the ability of the liver to function normally.
He said that majority of people do not experience symptoms in the early stages of primary liver cancer.
Ikponwonsa said the symptom of liver cancer include abdominal discomfort, pains, tiredness, yellowing of the skin (skin decolouration) and the whiteness of the eyes.
He said other symptoms are chalky stools, nausea, vomiting, bruising or bleeding, weakness and fatigue.
The physician said the exact cause of liver cancer is not known, revealing that most cases are linked to scarring of the liver, also referred to as cirrhosis.
He, therefore, warned people against unhealthy living, lack of exercise and also to watch out for the symptoms.