Bile Duct Cancer 101
Primary bile duct cancer, also called cholangiocarcinoma, is a rare disease. Each year, an estimated 2,000 to 3,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with bile duct cancer.
Te bile ducts are tubes that connect the liver and the gallbladder to the small intestine. Tese ducts collect bile, a fluid the liver makes to break down fat during digestion. Bile moves from the gallbladder through the common bile duct into the small intestine.
When normal cells in the bile ducts grow old or get damaged, they die, and new cells take their place. Sometimes, this process goes wrong. New cells form when the body doesn’t need them, and old or damaged cells don’t die as they should. Tese extra cells can build up into a tissue mass called a tumor. Tumors can be benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer).
Bile duct cancer may cause fever, itchy skin, jaundice (yellowing of skin or eyes), or pain in the abdomen. Most often, these symptoms are not due to cancer. If you have these symptoms, tell your doctor so any health problems can be diagnosed and treated as early as possible.
Te hepatobiliary cancer team at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) focuses on cancers of the liver and bile ducts. Te team includes these specialists:
• Surgeons • Medical oncologists (doctors who treat cancer with medicine)
• Radiation oncologists (doctors who treat cancer with radiation)
• Interventional radiologists (doctors using minimally invasive techniques)
• Gastroenterologists (doctors who treat diseases of the digestive system)
Location of the bile ducts
• Dietitians • Social workers
Te team works together to identify, for each patient, the most effective course of treatment. Every patient benefits from the team’s expertise and HCI’s state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment technology.
Huntsman Cancer Institute 2000 Circle of Hope, Room 2360 Salt Lake City, Utah 84112
RETURN SERVICE REQUESTED
NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION U.S. POSTAGE
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH PERMIT NO. 1529
| Page 2
| Page 3
| Page 4