Liver cancer

At the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness & Research Centre we know that a cancer diagnosis is a life changing event. We also know that every cancer is different, just like every person is different. We are dedicated to supporting and guiding you throughout your care. On this page you can learn about symptoms of liver cancer and the potential treatment pathway.

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What is liver cancer?

Liver cancer is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the liver. The liver has a variety of roles – it removes waste products from the blood, it helps to digest fat by producing bile, it stores sugar and turns it into energy, and it helps the blood to clot. 


Types of liver cancer

Hepatocellular carcinoma, or hepatoma, is the most common liver cancer and begins in the liver's main cells.

Cholangiocarcinoma, or bile duct cancer, is the second most common liver cancer. Gall bladder cancer is also a type of cholangiosarcoma. It begins in the cells lining the bile duct, which is the tube that connects the liver with the small intestine and carries bile to help with digestion. 


What are the symptoms of liver cancer?

Liver cancer often does not have any early symptoms. If you have any of the following symptoms please see your doctor. These symptoms may also occur for ailments other than cancer. Your doctor will advise if you need tests and where you should go to have these tests. 


  • Pain in the top right side of the belly
  • Pale bowel motions
  • Fever
  • Tiredness
  • Yellow skin and eyes
  • Swollen and painful belly
  • Weight loss
  • Appetite loss
This information should not be used to replace medical advice.

Can I be treated at the ONJ Centre?

Once you have been diagnosed with cancer, your doctor or specialist can make a referral to the ONJ Centre for your cancer treatment. You can ask to be referred here, regardless of your insurance status or the stage of your treatment. The ONJ Centre is part of Austin Health, a leading Australian public hospital.

how to get a referral