of the liver: This cancer begins in the liver, then can spread quickly
to other parts of the body. These are very rare tumors. When they do happen, they
most often affect babies and toddlers.
Hepatocellular carcinoma is more common in children who have:
conditions connected with cirrhosis (long-term damage) of the liver, like hereditary
hemochromatosis, alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency, glycogen storage disease, and
other liver diseases
How Are Liver Tumors Treated?
Surgery to remove a tumor usually is the best and most effective treatment for
children with benign or malignant liver tumors.
Sometimes doctors can just keep an eye on benign tumors if they don't cause serious
symptoms. If a benign tumor gets very large or causes a problem, a surgeon will remove
it. When this happens, usually no other treatment is needed.
For a malignant liver tumor:
Chemotherapy to shrink
the tumor and surgery work well when a hepatocellular tumor is found early.
(also called transarterial radioembolization with yttrium-90 or TARE-Y90) is a procedure
that delivers radiation treatment right to the tumor.
In some cases, a child with a malignant liver tumor may need a liver
What Else Should I Know?
When your child needs treatment for a tumor, it can feel overwhelming. But you're
not alone. To find support, talk to anyone on the care team or a hospital social worker.
Many resources are available to help you and your child get through this difficult
You also can find information and support online at: