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J Clin Gastroenterol. 2005 May-Jun;39(5):401-12.

The diagnosis and management of benign hepatic tumors.

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  • 1Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Department of Medicine, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, CA, USA.


Benign hepatic tumors include a broad spectrum of regenerative and true neoplastic processes. Because of advances in imaging studies such as computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as well as progress in immunohistochemistry, accurate diagnosis can now be made in a large percentage of patients without surgical laparotomy or resection. This article will focus on the pathogenesis, diagnosis, and management of focal benign lesions of the liver. Many of these tumors present with typical features in various imaging studies. On occasions, biopsies are required and/or surgical removal is needed. The most common benign hepatic tumors include cavernous hemangioma, focal nodular hyperplasia, hepatic adenoma, and nodular regenerative hyperplasia. In the majority of cases of benign hepatic tumors, patients are asymptomatic, and no treatment is indicated. The main indication for treatment is the presence of significant clinical symptoms or suspicion of malignancy or fear of malignant transformation.

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