Benign Tumors of the Liver
Benign liver tumors are relatively common. Most of them are asymptomatic, but some may lead to hepatomegaly, disturbances in the right upper quadrant of the abdomen, or intraperitoneal bleeding. They are usually detected by chance during ultrasonographic or other imaging examinations. The hepatic function tests are normal or slightly above the normal limits in most patients. Diagnosis is generally made with imaging methods. The biopsy may also be necessary. Treatment is only needed in certain specific conditions.
Types of Benign Liver Tumor
- Focal nodular hyperplasia
- Hepatocellular adenoma
Hemangiomas are the most common benign tumors of the liver. Hemangioma is a mass lesion consisting of abnormal vessels and is more common among females.
These benign tumors are usually asymptomatic and need no treatment. In very rare cases, e.g., a large hemangioma in an infant can be removed to prevent coagulation and heart failure.
Focal Nodular Hyperplasia
Focal nodular hyperplasia is the second most common benign tumor of the liver after hemangioma. It is more common in females between the age of 20 and 30 years. Like other benign tumors, they are detected during imaging examinations performed for other health problems. These tumors, which are also called FNH, are usually asymptomatic, and no treatment is required. If they are large, your physician may recommend their removal in very rare cases.
Focal Hepatocellular Adenoma
Hepatocellular adenomas are relatively rare benign tumors of the liver. They are more common in females at child-bearing age. As they are generally asymptomatic, most of them never been diagnosed. In rare cases, these tumors may rupture and cause bleeding. When the physicians detect a large adenoma, they may recommend the removal of it to prevent the bleeding risk. The hepatocellular adenomas may enlarge in females using hormone-containing drugs. Therefore, physicians usually recommend the discontinuation of the contraceptive drugs and postmenopausal hormone replacement treatments to women who have this type of tumor.