Liver lesions are abnormal growths that occur for a variety of reasons. Some are noncancerous (benign), and others are cancerous. Many benign lesions do not need treatment. But if it’s cancer, effective therapy may save your life.
Liver lesions are abnormal growths that may be noncancerous (benign) or cancerous.
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Types of benign liver lesions include:
Cancerous liver lesions include:
Researchers aren’t sure why some lesions develop. Possible causes include:
The symptoms you experience depend on the type of liver lesion.
Benign lesions typically do not cause symptoms, especially when they are small. On rare occasions, they can become large enough to press on nearby organs. When this happens, you may experience abdominal pain.
Liver cancer does not cause symptoms in its early stages. As the lesion grows, you may experience:
There is no single test that can diagnose all liver lesions. Your doctor may order a combination of tests to diagnose your liver lesions.
The most important tests used are:
Treatments of liver lesions depends on:
Liver cancers always need treatment. There are several options. Your healthcare provider will help you decide which one is best for you. Treatments for liver cancer include:
It’s difficult to prevent benign liver lesions. But you can lower your liver cancer risk by:
The outlook is often good. Benign liver lesions rarely grow, and they do not spread. And most lesions don’t need treatment.
It varies based on the type of cancer and how long the cancer has been there.
The impact depends on your diagnosis:
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Liver lesions are abnormal growths that have various causes. Many do not need treatment. You might not know you have them. If you are at risk or experiencing symptoms, talk to your healthcare provider. They may recommend specialized testing or monitoring to check for changes that require additional care. And if imaging studies show signs of a liver lesion, remember that it might not be serious. Only a small number of these growths are cancerous.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 05/18/2021.
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