Liver Cancer Prognosis—What is The Outcome Stage by Stage?

Just what is liver cancer prognosis? 

Liver cancer prognosis is the amount of possibility for a patient’s recovery or the chance of the cancer occurring again or recovery ever occurring. There are various factors which affect the recurrence of liver cancer, some which are most important are:

Cancer Type and Location in the Body

  • Metastasization (or the extent of which the cancer has progressed or spread.);
  • Its grade (How abnormal the cancer cells appear and the rate of progression of the cancer cells.)

There are also several other factors, such as the person’s general health, their age, and the level of response to treatment.
What does liver cancer prognosis depend on?

  • Which particular stage the cancer is at (The size of the tumor, whether or not it affects only part or the entirety of the liver, or it having spread or not to other parts of the body);
  • How well the liver is functioning;
  • The patients general health including whether or not there is cirrhosis of the liver regardless of how it occurred;
  • Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) levels

What are the survival rates for someone with liver cancer?

What survival rates indicate are the percentage of people with a particular kind and stage of cancer who survive the disease for a particular duration of time after they have been given a diagnosis. It is not uncommon for statistics of liver cancer to refer to the five year survival rate, which refers to the total number of people that are typically alive (not necessarily thriving) five years after their diagnosis and whether or not they have little or no indications or signs of cancer, are free from the disease, or are receiving any treatment.

Liver Cancer Prognosis

Liver Cancer Prognosis

Survival rates are based on large groups of people therefore are generalized or quantified, and cannot be used to predict what will happen to a particular patient; merely, it tells what is typical for a patient relative to their symptoms and the knowledge of the disease and the chances relative to the majority of those with similar symptoms. This is because no two patients are alike, and biology of the patients vary from person to person, making it unlikely for a similar outcome in even seemingly similar cases.
Survival Rates and Liver Cancer Prognosis

Survival rates can be determined or calculated by various methods for various purposes, which are not the same. The particular liver cancer survival rates shown are based on the relative survival rate, which evaluates the likelihood of survival of the cancer in patients in relation to the general populous in order to figure out the effect of cancer. The overall relative five-year liver cancer survival rate for the years of 1991-2001 was 9%.

Five year relative survival rates for liver cancer by sex and race were:

  • 7.4% for white men
  • 10.6% for white women
  • 5.5% for black men
  • 4.6% for black women

How do the stages of liver cancer affect the prognosis?

Of course, early detection is key so the stage at which the liver cancer is detected, diagnosed and when treatment begins all affect the prognosis.

  • 31% of cases are diagnosed while the cancer is strictly in the primary site, or localized stage
  • 26% of cases are diagnosed where the cancer has spread to the regional lymph nodes, beyond the primary site, or regional stage
  • 22% of cases diagnosed once the cancer is in the distant stage, or has metastasized
  • The staging information was unknown for 22% of cases

Five year relative survival rates of those with liver cancer based on the stage:

  • 19.0% for localized stage
  • 6.6% for regional stage
  • 3.4% for distant stage
  • 3.3% for unstaged stage

Liver Cancer Prognosis and Death Rates

The average age of people who died from liver cancer was 71 years old from 1998-2002.

The percentage of people whose cause of death is liver cancer based on age:

  • 0.5% died under age 20
  • 0.8% died between 20 and 34
  • 3.2% died between 35 and 44
  • 13.0% died between 45 and 54
  • 17.4% died between 55 and 64
  • 26.8% died between 65 and 74
  • 27.4% died between 75 and 84
  • 10.9% died at 85+ years of age.

The liver cancer death rate was 4.7 per 100,000 men and women (age adjusted). These rates are based on deaths occurring from 1998-2002 in the United States. Death rates based on race and sex were:

  • 6.8 per 100,000 men and 3.0 per 100,000 women for all races
  • 6.2 per 100,000 men and 2.7 per 100,000 women (White)
  • 9.5 per 100,000 men and 3.8 per 100,000 women (Black)
  • 15.4 per 100,000 men and 6.5 per 100,000 women (Asian/Pacific Islander)
  • 7.9 per 100,000 men and 4.3 per 100,000 women (American Indian/Alaska Native)
  • 10.7 per 100,000 men and 5.1 per 100,000 women (Hispanic)

Patients seeking information on liver cancer prognosis face the same uncertainty as those with other kinds of cancer. Although some patients find it easier to deal with their prognosis by knowing the statistics, some believe the numbers are too impersonal, and therefore useless. Patients are in a better position when equipped with a doctor knowledgeable of the patient’s individual situation because that doctor can relay what the statistics will mean for that person.

However, it is vital to note that even doctors won’t be able to tell exactly what to expect: liver cancer prognosis can change based on whether or not the treatment is successful or the cancer has spread. It is ultimately up to the patient to seek information on liver cancer prognosis and determine how they will deal with it.

If you’re looking for the most up to date information on cancer of the liver and its prognosis, click here right now and don’t live one more day with the fear that uncertainty can bring.  Of course, knowledge may be power, but a doctor is the only person who can save your life.

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