Bile Duct Cancer

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Cholangiocarcinoma is also known as bile duct cancer. This cancer effects the slender tubes that carry the digestive fluid bile through the liver. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about this type of cancer in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Bile duct cancer arises from the cells that line the bile ducts, the drainage system for bile produced by the liver. Bile ducts drain into the gallbladder and finally into the small intestine where it aids in the digestion process.

Bile duct cancer is also called cholangiocarcinoma. It is a rare form of cancer, with about 2,000 new cases diagnosed each year.

Risk factors include having inflammation of the bile duct, ulcerative colitis and some liver diseases. Bile duct tumors may not cause any symptoms until they have grown in size and the cancer has metastasized.

The incidence of bile duct cancer increases with age. It is a slow-growing cancer that invades local structures and for that reason, the diagnosis is often made late in the disease process when the bile ducts become blocked.

Treatment for bile duct cancer depends upon where the cancer is located and whether it is possible for it to be completely removed by surgery. Other treatment options include radiation therapy and chemotherapy.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.