watch out for these new risk factors!

watch out for these new risk factors!

THE ESSENTIAL

  • Located in the digestive tract, the role of the liver is to ensure the purification of the organism.
  • Fibrosis is the stage preceding cirrhosis: the cells regenerate but are transformed into fibrous tissue.
  • 80% of liver cancer cases are in men.

830,000 people died from liver cancer worldwide in 2020. It is the third deadliest cancer after lung cancer and colorectal cancer. In 90% of cases, it is hepatocellular carcinoma, a form of cancer that develops from liver cells, hepatocytes. Generally, these cases are related to risk factors, which can be avoided.

Cirrhosis, a breeding ground for cancer

According to the French National Society of Gastroenterology, nine out of ten cases are a complication of a chronic liver disease, called cirrhosis. “Weakened, the hepatocytes then turn into malignant cells., explains the SNFGE. This pathology appears after a certain time, when the liver is subjected to prolonged chronic inflammation: it can be the consequence of excessive and regular consumption of alcohol, infection with the hepatitis B virus and/or C, or to rare diseases.

Hepatitis B and C: a potential cause

The Cancer Research Foundation believes that hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV) viruses are one of the leading causes of hepatocellular carcinoma worldwide. Both diseases share similar modes of transmission: they are caused by a virus that can be transmitted from mother to child during birth and delivery, or through contact with blood or other body fluids. The World Health Organization points out that contamination with these fluids can occur as a result of “sexual relations with an infected partner, unsafe injections or exposure to sharp or pointed instruments in health care settings, communities and among people who inject drugs.” Hepatitis B can be prevented through vaccination, now recommended for infants and adults at risk. On the other hand, there is no vaccination against hepatitis C. The two viruses generate inflammation of the liver, which can progress to cancer.

Non-pathological risk factors

The appearance of cancer can also be linked to substances. Smoking, regular consumption of anabolic steroids, used by athletes to increase their muscle mass, increase the risk of cancer. “Aflatoxin B15 which is produced by a fungus of the Aspergillus type and which proliferates in corn, peanuts or even cotton seeds, grown in hot and humid countries of Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. can also increase this risk, according to the ARC foundation. Often, cancer does not have a single explanation, for many people its appearance is linked to the intersection of several risk factors.

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