Important information

A person with a suspected liver cancer should be referred to a gastroenterologist or hepatologist who is a member of a relevant multidisciplinary team.

All specialists listed on Canrefer are members of a multidisciplinary team.


What is liver cancer?

Liver cancer is cancer that starts in the cells of the liver. The most common type of liver cancer is hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

The risk factors for liver cancer include:

  • chronic hepatitis CGraphic of the human body highlighting the liver
  • hepatitis B
  • a family history of hepatocellular carcinoma
  • cirrhosis of the liver due to any cause.


What tests are needed?

Common tests used to diagnose liver cancer include:

  • physical examination
  • blood tests
  • Imaging - ultrasound, CT scan, MRI scan and/or PET scan
  • biopsy.


What treatment options are there?

Treatment for liver cancer may include one or more of the following:

  • surgery
  • chemotherapy
  • radiotherapy
  • tumour ablation (radiofrequency/microwave)
  • embolisation therapy (chemoembolisation/radioembolisation).

If treatment is specialised and complex, patients may need to travel to have a part of their treatment. The local health district will have an arrangement in place for this.


How common is liver cancer in NSW?

Liver cancer was diagnosed in:

  • 2011
    602 people in NSW
  • 2012
    632 people in NSW
  • 2013
    674 people in NSW

Data Source: Annual NSW cancer incidence and mortality dataset, 2013 (sourced from the NSW Cancer Registry)

Better cancer care

Better cancer care

Every person with cancer should have their care overseen by a specialist on a multidisciplinary team.

Liver cancer clinical guidelines

The nationally recognised best practice pathway for liver cancer management in Australia.
Quick reference guide
Clinical guidelines