Liver cancer is the sixth leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. Though men are three times more likely to develop the disease, its rates are on a steady upward trend among women. At Endovascular and Interventional Associates, interventional oncology specialist Mobolaji Odelowo, MD, frequently performs liver biopsies and two advanced treatments, ablation and embolization. If you need help with liver cancer, call the office in Conroe, Texas, or book an appointment online today.
Your liver performs many essential jobs, including removing toxins from your blood and regulating the levels of sugars and amino acids in your blood.
Your risk of developing liver cancer increases if you have any of these health conditions:
Smoking also increases your risk of liver cancer.
Liver cancer develops when DNA becomes mutated. Then the affected cells grow too rapidly and accumulate into a tumor.
When symptoms appear, you may experience:
Many people also have a feeling of fullness under their ribs on the right side.
After a physical exam and blood tests, you may need one or more imaging tests such as ultrasound, MRI, or CT scan. However, the only way to verify you have liver cancer is with a biopsy.
At Endovascular and Interventional Associates, Dr. Odelowo uses real-time imaging to perform a percutaneous biopsy. During your biopsy, he inserts a needle through your skin and into the liver. Then he uses the needle to withdraw tissue samples.
The first line of treatment for liver cancer is surgery to remove the tumor, but you may not qualify for surgery. A good surgical candidate typically has a single tumor that can be removed while leaving behind enough healthy liver to maintain its functioning.
As an experienced interventional oncologist, Dr. Odelowo specializes in the top two treatments for people who can’t have surgery: embolization and ablation.
Embolization is often a good option for large liver tumors. When you have an embolization, Dr. Odelowo injects substances into the hepatic artery that block the flow of blood. The hepatic artery supplies blood to the tumor. When the blood supply stops, the tumor cells die.
Dr. Odelowo also performs chemoembolization. During this procedure, he first injects chemotherapy medication before blocking the artery.
Ablation, which is usually recommended for small tumors, destroys the tumor using different techniques. Dr. Odelowo may recommend radiofrequency (RF) ablation or cryoablation. During both procedures, he uses a needle-like probe inserted into the tumor. RF ablation kills the tumor cells using heat produced by sound waves, while cryotherapy freezes the cells.
If you need a biopsy or treatment for liver cancer, call Endovascular and Interventional Associates, or book an appointment online today.