Hepatocellular carcinoma in the early stage
Progress in imaging diagnosis has made it possible to detect an increasing number of minute hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs), some of which can be removed successfully by surgery. In addition, lesions intermediate between regenerative nodules and minute HCCs, i.e. borderline lesions, can also be detected. Through analysis of these lesions, we have learned the natural course of human hepatocarcinogenesis. Long after infection with hepatitis viruses, small nodular lesions (adenomatous hyperplasia), which do not destroy substantially the underlying liver structure, develop in liver showing chronic hepatitis or cirrhosis. Some of these nodules show structural abnormalities and are diagnosed as well-differentiated HCC (early HCC). Nodule-in-nodule lesions composed of a peripheral area of early HCC and a central area of less well differentiated HCC are also observed. Clinicopathologically, it is very important to establish criteria for differentiating between adenomatous hyperplasia and early HCC.
KeywordsPortal Vein Tumor Thrombus Small Hepatocellular Carcinoma Adenomatous Hyperplasia Atypical Adenomatous Hyperplasia Borderline Lesion
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