Stay Safe by Understanding Causes of Liver Cancer

Stay Safe by Understanding Causes of Liver Cancer

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Liver cancer is a very serious illness that occurs when the cells start to develop mutations in their DNA, causing changes in the instructions sent out by the DNA. This causes the cells to grow without any control, ending up in the formation of a tumor (of cancerous cells). Hepatocellular cancer (HCC) is said to be the most common type of primary liver cancer.

Causes of Liver Cancer

There are various causes of liver cancer and we can list them down as follows:

Cirrhosis – this is a condition where scars appear in the liver caused due to some kind of damage, say, due to long term alcohol intake or inherited diseases. The scars affect normal functioning of the liver, which increases the risks of liver cancer.

Alcohol – increased alcohol intake on a daily basis increases the chances of cancer.

Non alcoholic fatty liver disease – this condition, fat gets accumulated in the liver, causing inflammation and leading to cirrhosis.

Infection with hepatitis viruses – when you are infected with hepatitis B or C virus for a long term, it increases the risk of primary liver cancer because it can lead to cirrhosis.

Smoking – smoking greatly increases the risks of developing liver cancer. When smoking is combined with alcohol intake, the risk of developing cancer further increases. Sometimes, children of those people who smoked earlier or during pregnancy, have an increased risk of hepatoblastoma, a rare type of cancer.

Low immunity – low immunity caused due to AIDS or HIV or certain medicines have a risk of getting liver cancer, 5 times more than those who do not have these health issues. Those who have had a liver transplant also have a higher risk of liver cancer, mostly if there were risk causing factors in the donor’s body.

Lupus – in this chronic condition, Systemic lupus erythematosus or SLE, there is inflammation of your joints and skin and may sometimes include the heart and kidneys. Those with SLE have a higher risk of liver cancer.

Family History – people who have liver cancer in their family history are more likely to develop it themselves.

Diabetes – people with diabetes are more prone to liver cancer due to the high levels of insulin or liver damage caused by diabetes.

Body weight – obesity also increases the risks of liver cancer greatly.

Radiation from CT scans, X-rays – the radiations from these scans can cause liver cancer if they are performed too often. But the risk is not that high in this.

Gallbladder removal – removal of gall bladder can increase the risk of liver cancer because it increases the pressure inside the bile duct, causing damage to the liver tissue.

And the list goes on.


Liver cancer can be caused due to the above mentioned, numerous factors. It is best to take preventive measures or do something to lower the risks. The risks of liver cancer can be reduced by taking vegetables, fish, statins and coffee.

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