What is known?
Primary liver cancer is a leading source of cancer deaths globally and is associated with poor survival. The key cause of liver cancer is viral hepatitis B infection in Asia and other developing countries, and viral hepatitis C in developed countries. Several individual studies from specific countries have reported rising incidence of adult liver cancers.
What is new?
Thirty-one peer-reviewed published papers were summarised to estimate the overall change in liver cancer incidence over time. We found that liver cancer incidence rates are continuing to increase in western countries and Africa/South America, while in Asia, incidence is decreasing.
What does this mean?
The increasing diagnoses of primary liver cancers highlights the need for reducing viral hepatitis infections and targeted interventions, reducing smoking and alcohol consumption, and achieving healthy weight levels at the population level, to potentially reduce the liver cancer burden.
Contact: Paramita Dasgupta
Reference: Dasgupta P, Henshaw C, Youlden DR, Clark PJ, Aitken JF, Baade PD. Global trends in incidence rates of primary adult liver cancers: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Frontiers in Oncology. 2020; 10:171.