Here in Australia, liver disease and liver cancer have been flying under the radar for far too long. You can change this
“I didn’t get sick from it, wouldn’t even notice.
The fact that I had the tumors, the fact that I had two.
That’s not real good luck is it? But what caused it is what worried me.” Paul
Paul was in for a routine blood check after experiencing some bladder issues. What the doctor noticed suggested something wasn’t right. Paul was referred to see Professor Darrell Crawford, Director of Research at GMRF, and liver specialist at Greenslopes Private Hospital. It was in this moment that Paul was diagnosed with tumour in both lobes of the liver.
Brisbane local and former banker, Paul has lived all around Queensland from Townsville to the Gold Coast even spending some time in Darwin. Paul, now 71, enjoyed a couple of drinks with mates in his younger years but nothing excessive. These days Paul keeps active playing golf with friends and tries to eat well.
Naturally, Paul was shocked to find out that the tumors in his liver were because of underlying liver disease, which is sometimes associated with excessive alcohol consumption.
“If it was one lobe they could’ve taken it out, but seeing as it’s in two you can't have an operation. It’s fairly dangerous really. In younger people it’s normally a liver transplant, but I’m too old for that,” says Paul.
There was no sign of anything wrong with Paul’s liver, until it was almost too late. Thankfully, Paul’s tumours were caught early enough that different forms of treatment could be offered. After undergoing some treatment at Greenslopes Private Hospital, Paul's tumours seemed to have reduced in size.
“The liver is one of the most adaptable organs. It can be severely damaged and you’ll never feel it. Liver disease takes a long time to progress, there’s no drastic changes in one year. Most liver disease patients are in their 40s-50s and haven’t been aware of it before” says Lucas, PhD candidate at GMRF.
Lucas is investigating how saliva can be used to detect liver injury and prevent disease from becoming cancer. Learn more about GMRF’s liver research.
Your liver is one of the most important organs in your body! Here are some easy ideas to
help look after your liver.
- Eat the rainbow - Eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables the same colour as the rainbow.
- Take small steps - Try taking the stairs where possible.
- Know your limits - For healthy people, no more than two standard drinks per day is recommended.
- Over 50? Get a check-up! -Talk to your GP about a liver check-up.
- Help advance liver research - You can help to create a brighter future for people living with
Print out this easy liver health guide for simple reminders.
Help continue this important medical research. You can make a real and lasting difference to people with liver disease and liver cancer. Please donate what you can before 30 June to help predict and prevent liver disease in adult Australians.
Our 100% promise: Every cent of your gift goes to innovative research or support initiatives like the Cancer Wellness Program. Our administration costs are covered by the in-kind support of Greenslopes Private Hospital and the income of our Clinical Trials Unit.