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      Is it true that liver cancer runs in families?
      • Upper Basement Sahyadri Multispeciality
        Hospital, Karve Road,Deccan Gymkhana, Pune-04
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      The answer to this question is that liver cancer has a slight hereditary component, but it isn’t particularly strong. While your family’s genes play a little, if anything, that impacts your risk of liver cancer, it’s your family history, which can enhance your risk in other ways.

      Cirrhosis, significant scarring of the liver that develops during decades of inflammatory disease, is usually the cause of primary liver cancer. Cirrhosis cannot be passed down through the generations, but your family history may raise your chances of developing the conditions that contribute to it.

      Hepatitis B or C, severe alcohol consumption is the most common causes of liver inflammation. Hepatitis B and C are viral illnesses that can be passed from a mother to her child through her blood rather than genes. As a result, if your mother was infected with one of these viruses before you were born, your chances of contracting the virus are higher than usual. Your family’s history of drinking may influence your usage of alcohol. The combination of alcohol and an active hepatitis virus is highly harmful to the liver.

      Hemochromatosis, a disorder that raises the chance of cirrhosis, is an example of the genetic component. If your mother – or, for that matter, your father – has this rare condition, you are at a higher chance of contracting it (though it is rare), and you should get examined for hemochromatosis and cirrhosis.

      Should you rush out and get checked for liver cancer after your family member’s recent diagnosis?

      No, if you don’t have cirrhosis, you shouldn’t be concerned about liver cancer. However, one should do a liver function test. This simple blood test examines your liver’s overall health for any symptoms of inflammation that could lead to cirrhosis. If the test results are normal, no further testing is required.

      Getting a liver function test now and then during your standard check-up every couple of years is a fantastic option that will provide you peace of mind regarding your liver health. Hepatitis B and C, as well as HIV, can be detected with a single blood test.

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