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What does it mean to have liver cysts, and are they a cause for concern?

Gastroenterology Colorectal Surgery

My mom who is in her 50s had an ultrasound scan for some stomach discomfort and was found to have 2 liver cysts. The size is about 1 x 1.5 cm. The GP told me that it's not life-threatening.

DOCTOR’S ANSWER (1)
Dr Quan Wai Leong
"A specialist in Digestive Health and Advanced Endoscopy"
(4 Reviews)

Liver cysts are common incidental findings on routine ultrasound scan of the abdomen. In general, small and simple liver cysts are benign and need no intervention. In fact, such cysts are also commonly found in the kidneys and occasionally in the pancreas. 

If your mom's liver function test is normal and she does not have other liver related problems such as viral hepatitis, there is very little you need to worry about.

Although the liver cysts may grow in size slowly and more cysts may be found over time, most patients remain healthy throughout. She can keep a watch by repeating her liver function and ultrasound scan say in a year's time. 

One ward of caution is the present of cysts with complex internal wall or structures or cysts which grows quickly. Such cysts may not be entirely friendly and carry the risk of transformation to something nasty over time. In such a case, surgical resection may be an option to consider.

-Dr Quan 


Dr Quan Wai Leong
MBBS, MRCP, FRCP, FAMS

Gastroenterology and Hepatology, GI Endoscopy and Liver Centre @Royal Square
101 IRRAWADDY ROAD
ROYAL SQUARE
#15 - 01 Singapore 329565

285 views 29 Jan 2019
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Disclaimer: Any answers provided are for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment.

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