Liver Cancer is on the Rise in the United States

The percentage of Americans developing liver cancer has been rising slowly for several decades.  The American Cancer Society estimates that about 35,660 new cases (25,510 in men and 10,150 in women) will be diagnosed in the United States in 2015 and about 24,550 people (17,030 men and 7,520 women) will die of these cancers. 

Several risk factors, including cirrhosis, hepatitis B or hepatitis C, obesity, type 2 diabetes, etc., and an increase in unhealthy lifestyle choices, are being attributed to the rise of liver cancer. 

The liver is the largest internal organ in the human body, and one of the most vital to life, so it is important to keep it healthy and disease free.  It is responsible for over 500 functions, including the secretion of glucose, proteins, vitamins, and fats; the production of bile; the processing of hemoglobin; and detoxification of numerous substances. 

Treating liver cancer with radiation therapy can sometimes be a challenge because liver tumors move with respiration.  In addition, the tissue surrounding the liver tumors is very sensitive and can be easily damaged.  

At Rush Radiosurgery, we treat liver cancer with the TrueBeam™ STx Stereotactic Radiosurgery System.  TrueBeam™ STx’s ability to treat tumors with precisely focused radiation offers an important advantage for liver cancer patients.  Accurate to within less than a millimeter, radiosurgery has minimal effect on surrounding healthy tissue.  This level of accuracy enables doctors to target liver tumors with high-dose radiation, which significantly reduces the number of treatments needed, usually between three and five over several days compared to 30-40 over several weeks required for radiotherapy systems. 

For more information on liver cancer, please visit the American Liver Foundation.  To find out more about how Rush Radiosurgery treats liver cancer, please click here