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Bile Duct Cancer (Cholangiocarcinoma) (cont.)

Understanding Cancer: Metastasis, Stages of Cancer, Pictures
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What is the prognosis for bile duct cancer? What is the life expectancy for bile duct cancer?

How well a patient does after the diagnosis of bile duct cancer depends upon many factors, including where the tumor is located, if and how much it has spread, and the patient's underlying general health. Patients have a better prognosis the farther away from the liver hilum the tumor is located, and according to certain aspects of shape and cell type within the tumor. Prognosis is worse for those patients whose tumor has invaded adjacent tissues, has lymph node involvement, or has spread to distant places in the body.

If untreated, bile duct cancer survival is 50% at one year, 20% at two years, and 10% at three years with virtually no survival at five years.

Being able to completely remove the tumor increases survival but this mostly depends upon the location of the tumor and whether it has invaded other tissues.

Intrahepatic (Within the Liver) Bile Duct Cancer
StageFive-Year Relative Survival
Localized (stage 1)15%
Regional spread (stage 2, 3)6%
Distant spread (stage 4)2%

Extrahepatic (Outside the Liver) Bile Duct Cancer
StageFive-Year Relative Survival
Localized (stage 1)30%
Regional spread (stage 2, 3)24%
Distant spread (stage 4)2%

Is it possible to prevent bile duct cancer?

Since the cause of bile duct cancer is uncertain, specific methods of prevention do not exist. However, preventing liver inflammation and cirrhosis may decrease the risk of developing this cancer. This includes moderating the use of alcohol, being vaccinated for the hepatitis B virus, and abstaining from risky behaviors that might cause infection with hepatitis C.

As with all diseases that tend to develop at an older age, living a healthy lifestyle may extend lifespan, as well. This includes not smoking, eating a balanced diet, keeping physically active, and maintaining a healthy weight.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/12/2018



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