Published online Jul 21, 2008. doi: 10.3748/wjg.14.4300
Revised: May 1, 2008
Accepted: May 8, 2008
Published online: July 21, 2008
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the commonest primary malignant cancer of the liver in the world. Given that the burden of chronic liver disease is expected to rise owing to increasing rates of alcoholism, hepatitis B and C prevalence and obesity-related fatty liver disease, it is expected that the incidence of HCC will also increase in the foreseeable future. This article summarizes the international epidemiology, the risk factors and the pathogenesis of HCC, including the roles of viral hepatitis, toxins, such as alcohol and aflatoxin, and insulin resistance.