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Primary and secondary liver cancer

Posted Feb 08 2009 7:11pm


Read why secondary liver cancer isn't a 'real' liver cancer. Not real in the sense that cancers are named according where they originated in the body.


  1. A primary liver cancer is a cancer that originated in the liver.
  2. A secondary liver cancer is a cancer that originated somewhere else in the body and than spread towards and inside the liver.


A secondary liver cancer is also called a metastatic liver cancer: 'meta-static' means your cancer isn't static to it's place of origin.


Why differentiate between primary and secondary cancer?


It took me quite a long while and a talk with the oncologist to grab the importance of the origin of the cancer.


The treatment of any secondary cancer boils down to finding the primary cancer and curing the body from this primary cancer.


Compare with having a cold: when at the origin of your cold lies a virus, then it is useless to treat yourself with antibiotics, as antibiotics kill bacteria, nor do they kill a virus.


Same with treating secondary liver cancer: if the primary cancer is a prostate cancer, treatments to cure the cancer will be based on common treatments to get rid of prostate cancer.


Why is secondary liver cancer so hard to treat?


Any cancer is hard to treat using only conventional cures, unless you detect the cancer early. Early means that the cancer hasn't spread at all.


Since the definition of a secondary cancer means: it is a cancer that has spread, we are no more in an early stage.


Therefore the prognosis of secondary liver cancer based solely on conventional cancer treatments isn't good. The good news is that there are metastatic liver cancer survivor s at this very moment!

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