PT Health Life

Weight loss jaundice… signs of malignant cancer

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PT Health Life – Cholangiocarcinoma is a type of malignant cancer arising from any component of the biliary tract, of which the most common (accounting for 95%) originates from the biliary epithelium.

Jaundice , an observable symptom, can be a sign of cholangiocarcinoma or other benign diseases such as gallstones, cirrhosis , hepatitis , etc. Therefore, when jaundice appears, If you lose weight, you need to immediately go to a medical facility for examination and treatment.

1. Jaundice is alert for cholangiocarcinoma

Patient  (56 years old) had dull right lower quadrant pain continuously for many days with jaundice, dark urine, discolored stools… The patient went to Bach Mai Hospital for examination, doctors discovered metastatic cholangiocarcinoma. liver.

According to the patient, 4 months before admission, the patient had unusual symptoms:  right upper quadrant abdominal pain , dull, continuous, gradually increasing, not spreading, with yellow eyes, jaundice, no vomiting, No nausea, dark urine, pale stools, weight loss of 3kg/month.

The patient examined at Bach Mai Hospital was diagnosed with biliary obstruction due to a tumor in the lower part of the common bile duct. He underwent laparoscopic pancreaticoduodenectomy and biliary enteroenteric anastomosis at the Department of Hepatobiliary Pancreatic Digestive Surgery. The patient was transferred to the Nuclear Medicine and Oncology Center for treatment.

After that, the patient’s surgery results were cholangiocarcinoma, invasion of the pancreas, duodenum, and damage to the liver due to liver metastasis. After 6 cycles of intravenous infusion and chemotherapy, the patient responded well, tumor markers decreased to normal levels, and CT scans showed no tumors in the liver and abdomen.

Yellow skin and eyes are common symptoms of many diseases related to the liver and bile.

2. What causes cholangiocarcinoma?

Cholangiocarcinoma is caused by many causes, including chronic infections, parasitic infections, exposure to chemicals used in the rubber industry, biliary cysts, congenital cirrhosis, and sclerosing cholangitis. primary disease, ulcerative colitis are favorable factors for cholangiocarcinoma. Cholangiocarcinoma in patients with ulcerative colitis tends to have a more severe course.

The most common symptom is jaundice, which occurs in about 90% of cases. Tumors of the common hepatic duct have earlier symptoms than tumors of the right and left hepatic ducts.

Abdominal pain appears in 30-50% of patients, sometimes patients are hospitalized because of fever and biliary tract infection. Other possible symptoms include: itching all over the body, anemia, loss of appetite and weight loss. In late cases, the patient may develop ascites (fluid in the abdomen).

It is currently difficult to detect cholangiocarcinoma early. The techniques of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography (PTC) and endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) help detect the disease, especially when it is necessary to determine the histological nature of the tumor.

In addition, the doctor will take a biopsy to determine the histological nature of the tumor cells and provide the most accurate treatment regimen.

3. Preventing cholangiocarcinoma

It is impossible to completely prevent cholangiocarcinoma, we can only avoid favorable factors for cholangiocarcinoma: avoid exposure to toxic chemicals, treat chronic infections, and parasitic diseases. such as helminths, gallstone disease, other biliary tract diseases (biliary cysts, cirrhosis, sclerosing cholangitis…), ulcerative colitis.

Everyone should have a health check every year, high-risk groups such as those over 50 years old, smokers for many years, people working in environments exposed to toxic chemicals, radioactive substances or in families with many People with cancer… need regular health checks to prevent disease.

In cases where suspicious symptoms appear such as: pain in the right upper abdomen, dark yellow urine, yellow skin, yellow eyes… you should immediately go to medical centers to detect the disease early in the surgical stage. radical technique.

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