Symptoms of Hepatoblastoma
In early stages of the Hepatoblastoma, there may be no concerning signs or symptoms. As the tumor gets larger, affected children may experience a painful, abdominal lump; swelling of the abdomen; unexplained weight loss; loss of appetite; and/or nausea and vomiting.
Cause of Hepatoblastoma
The exact underlying cause of hepatoblastoma is poorly understood.
Risk factors of Hepatoblastoma
Risk factors for the tumor include prematurity with a very low birth weight, early exposure to hepatitis B infection, biliary atresia, and several different genetic conditions (i.e. Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome, familial adenomatous polyposis, Aicardi syndrome, Glycogen storage disease, and Simpson-Golabi-Behmel syndrome).
Diagnosis of Hepatoblastoma
A biopsy of a pediatric liver tumor is always indicated to secure the diagnosis of hepatoblastoma.
Tumor markers of Hepatoblastoma
The Alha Feto Protein or AFP and beta-hCG tumor markers are very helpful in the diagnosis and management of liver tumors. Although AFP is elevated in most children with hepatic malignancy, it is not pathognomonic for a malignant liver tumor. The AFP level can be elevated with either a benign tumor or a malignant solid tumor. AFP is very high in neonates and steadily falls after birth. The half-life of AFP is 5 to 7 days, and by age 1 year, it should be less than 10 ng/mL.
Treatment of Hepatoblastoma
Treatment varies based on the severity of the condition but may include a combination of surgery, watchful waiting, chemotherapy, and/or radiation therapy.
Prognosis of Hepatoblastoma
The 5-year overall survival (OS) rate for children with hepatoblastoma is 70%.