What causes hepatoblastoma?
Although the exact cause of liver cancer is unknown, there are a number of genetic conditions that are associated with an increased risk for developing hepatoblastoma, including the following:
- Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome
- Familial adenomatous polyposis
- Glycogen storage disease type I
- Alpha-1 -antitrypsin deficiency
Children who have a hepatitis B infection at an early age, or those who have biliary atresia (a blockage in the tubes that carry bile), are also at increased risk for developing hepatoblastoma.
What are the symptoms of hepatoblastoma?
Each child may experience symptoms differently, and symptoms may vary depending on the size of the tumor and the presence and whether the tumor has spread.
Your child’s symptoms may include:
- A large abdominal mass, or swollen abdomen
- Weight loss, decreased appetite
- Abdominal pain
- Jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin)
- Itching skin
- Anemia (pale skin and lips from decreased number of red blood cells)
- Back pain from compression of the tumor
The symptoms of hepatoblastoma may resemble other conditions or medical problems. Always consult your child's physician for a diagnosis.