Every year, July 28 marks World Hepatitis Day across the world. Viral hepatitis infections are among the most prevalent and serious conditions in the world.
Hepatitis B and hepatitis C viruses are causes of liver cancer. Liver cancer is the sixth most common cancer in the world, with 782,000 new cases diagnosed in 2012. A study that is currently underway, builds on on a series of studies by the Cancer Control Group at QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane, and suggests that liver cancer in Australia is caused by five main factors.
Tobacco smoking caused 365 Australian liver cancer cases (21%) in 2013. Hepatitis C virus contributed to 330 cases (19%), hepatitis B virus accounted for 281 cases (16%), alcohol 266 cases (15%) and obesity 451 (25%).
Recent findings from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s (AIHW) Burden of Cancer report suggest liver cancer is a looming health threat in Australia. While rates of other cancers are falling or remaining static, liver cancer is the only “top ten” cancer for which rates increased between 2003 and 2011.
In the video below our President Professor George Yeoh talks about the link between liver cancer and viral hepatitis.
Find out more about World Hepatitis Day in Australia by joining the conversation online using the hashtags #WorldHepDay and #NOhep.