Pancreatic, liver disease shift up on risk list

May 23, 2014 by Stasia Thompson, Loyola University Health System

Money changes everything. To date, lung, breast, prostate and colorectal cancers have accounted for the largest number of cancer deaths. In response, these cancers currently receive the most research funding from the National Cancer Institute and are highlighted through public health campaigns, special event fundraising and celebrity spokespeople.

And the extra money and attention is working to end those cancers and move other cancers up in frequency of cause of death.

Cancer Research reports that, "By 2030 more people will be diagnosed with breast, prostate and lung cancers than with pancreatic cancers, but more and liver cancer patients will die of their disease."

What should people do? Get screened if you are at risk.

"Primary liver cancer, also called hepatocellular carcinoma, is curable when caught early, so if you have high risk factors such as cirrhosis, particularly cirrhosis from the hepatitis C virus, you should get screened," said Steve Scaglione, MD, board certified hepatologist at Loyola University Health System. Hepatologists are specialists in treating .

"Unlike a colonoscopy, liver cancer screening is noninvasive. It's just an ultrasound, every six months," he said.

If liver cancer is diagnosed, curative treatment options are available, including surgery and .

There are more than 100 kinds of liver disease, including cirrhosis, alcoholic-induced liver disease, and hepatitis. Hepatitis C is the leading cause of in America. More than 5 million people are living with hepatitis, which has been called a silent epidemic because it often is not detected until it has spread to the liver.

Screening for hepatitis C is not only recommended by public health organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention but is urged by lawmakers. In Colorado, a bill was signed into law on May 20, 2014, funding hepatitis screening. Specifically, hepatitis C testing is recommended for baby boomers (those born between 1945 and 1964) because they are estimated to be five times more likely to have contracted the disease.

The Loyola hepatology team offers treatment at 11 Loyola locations in Illinois and also conducts research and research trials to improve prevention and treatment.

"As new resources are devoted to these less common but more deadly forms of cancer, there is a higher likelihood of research advances to improve patient outcomes," said Susan Uprichard, PhD, associate professor and director of hepatology research at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. "Patients who seek treatment from an academic medical center such as Loyola have the advantage of not only receiving the most progressive care, but they also have the potential to participate in life-saving research trials."

Explore further: Liver cancer screening highly beneficial for people with cirrhosis

Related Stories

Liver cancer screening highly beneficial for people with cirrhosis

May 5, 2014
Liver cancer survival rates could be improved if more people with cirrhosis are screened for tumors using inexpensive ultrasound scans and blood tests, according to a review by doctors at UT Southwestern Medical Center.

Deaths from viral hepatitis surpasses HIV/AIDS as preventable cause of deaths in Australia

April 17, 2014
The analysis was conducted by Dr Benjamin Cowie and Ms Jennifer MacLachlan from the University of Melbourne and Melbourne Health, and was presented at The International Liver Congress in London earlier this month.

Hepatitis C remains major problem for HIV patients despite antiretroviral therapy

March 17, 2014
A new study led by researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania has found that the risk of hepatitis C-associated serious liver disease persists in HIV patients otherwise benefitting from ...

Pancreatic cancer projected to become second leading cause of cancer-related death in the US by 2030

May 20, 2014
(Medical Xpress)—An analysis projects pancreatic and liver cancers to become second and third leading causes of cancer-related death in the United States by 2030, respectively, behind lung cancer, which will remain the ...

Hepatitis C screening for baby boomers

April 29, 2013
If you were born during 1945-1965, talk to your doctor about getting tested for hepatitis C. The word "hepatitis" means swelling of the liver. Hepatitis is most often caused by a virus. In the United States, the most common ...

New data reveals positive outcomes for hepatitis C transplant patients

April 11, 2014
New research announced at the International Liver Congress 2014 today provides new hope for the notoriously difficult-to-treat population of liver transplant patients with recurring hepatitis C (HCV).

Recommended for you

Zika presents hot spots in brains of chicken embryos

April 19, 2018
Zika prefers certain "hot spots" in the brains of chicken embryos, offering insight into how brain development is affected by the virus.

Low-cost anti-hookworm drug boosts female farmers' physical fitness

April 19, 2018
Impoverished female farm workers infected with intestinal parasites known as hookworms saw significant improvements in physical fitness when they were treated with a low-cost deworming drug. The benefits were seen even in ...

Super-superbug clones invade Gulf States

April 18, 2018
A new wave of highly antibiotic resistant superbugs has been found in the Middle East Gulf States, discovered by University of Queensland researchers.

Of mice and disease: Antibiotic-resistant bacteria discovered in NYC house mice

April 17, 2018
A study by scientists at the Center for Infection and Immunity (CII) at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health finds New York City house mice carry bacteria responsible for mild to life-threatening gastroenteritis ...

Discovery explains how the chickenpox and shingles virus remains dormant

April 16, 2018
A research team led by UCL and Erasmus University has found a missing piece to the puzzle of why the virus that causes chickenpox and shingles can remain dormant for decades in human cells.

Children infected with malaria parasites produce odour more attractive to mosquitoes

April 16, 2018
Children infected with the malaria parasite Plasmodium were found to produce distinctive skin smells making them more attractive to malaria mosquitoes than uninfected children, according to new research published in Proceedings ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.