Stage 4 Liver Cancer: Symptoms and What to Expect

Liver cancer, also known as hepatic cancer, originates in the cells of the liver, one of the human body’s major organs. The liver performs several functions such as detoxifying, metabolizing lipids, synthesizing proteins, and assisting with digestion.

Stage 4 liver cancer, also known as metastatic liver cancer, is an advanced form of the disease that originated in the liver but has spread to other organs. Cancerous cells can occasionally spread throughout the body through the blood vessels or lymphatic system, invading new organs or tissues in a process known as metastasis.

Causes of stage 4 liver cancer

The development of advanced liver cancer is influenced by several risk factors. These factors include ailments, habits, and other aspects of lifestyle that might contribute to the development of the disease. Hepatitis B and C are thought to be responsible for 40% of cases each, while alcohol consumption is thought to be responsible for the beginning of 11% of cases and other reasons for 10% of cases.


Cirrhosis is scarring caused by liver injury. However, there are additional causes besides excessive alcohol consumption that might lead to cirrhosis. Scarring can be brought on by infections, hepatitis B or C, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, genetic liver illnesses, prolonged use of certain medicines, and persistent heart failure.

Cirrhosis is progressive and develops gradually over time. It is important to note that not everyone who has scarring will develop liver cancer. So regular liver cancer screenings for those with cirrhosis are recommended.

Hepatitis B

One of the main risk factors for liver cancer is chronic hepatitis B infection. It causes a 12-fold increase in cancer risk and can lower liver cancer survival rates even in the absence of cirrhosis.

Hepatitis C

Even in the absence of cirrhosis, chronic hepatitis C infections can result in liver cancer. Patients with hepatitis C are nine times more likely to experience this danger.

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)

People with a body mass index (BMI) over 30, type 2 diabetes, increased blood fat levels, or metabolic syndrome are more likely to develop NAFLD. This is the main reason why liver cancer develops and might shortly affect up to 25% of individuals.

Related Conditions

The bile ducts are impacted by a wide range of different diseases, and liver cancer can potentially develop in the liver. These include tyrosinemia, hemochromatosis, alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency, primary biliary cholangitis, Wilson disease, and porphyria cutanea tarda.


These mycotoxins, which are poisonous and carcinogenic (cause cancer), are created by fungus that grow on specific types of crops, such as peanuts, maize, tree nuts, and cottonseed. Exposure to aflatoxin is more frequent in underdeveloped nations. Since these crops are the main food, there is less capacity for food storage without the fear of contamination, which creates the perfect conditions for the fungus to flourish.

Liver injury induced by anabolic steroids

Anabolic steroids are utilized and categorized as “drugs that improve performance and attractiveness.” Both professional and amateur athletes utilize it, even though it is only permitted with a prescription, and it is strongly discouraged to take it to enhance performance.

The anabolic steroids injure the liver and are infrequently linked to the uncommon liver cancer known as angiosarcoma.