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What are the risk factors for hepatocellular liver disease?

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Risk factors for hepatocellular liver disease include alcoholism and exposure to circumstances that can lead to hepatitis, according to American Family Physician. This includes contaminated blood or bodily fluids, blood transfusions, unhygienic body piercings or tattoos and diabetes, claims Healthline. People are also at risk for hepatocellular liver disease if they are intravenous drug users and share needles, if they have been exposed to toxins, and if they have unprotected sex.

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People are also at risk for hepatocellular disease if they take certain medications, have elevated levels of triglycerides and have low levels of HDL, or "good" cholesterol, says the American Family Physician. Some people are at risk for the condition if they store too much iron in the liver, a condition called hemochromatosis, or if they have Wilson's disease, in which the patient has too much copper in the liver and other organs.

Hepatocellular liver disease can range from benign nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, according to Cleveland Clinic, to hepatocellular carcinoma, says MedlinePlus. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease can describe a liver that simply has too much fat, or a liver that is scarred and cirrhotic. Most liver cancers are hepatocellular, states MedlinePlus. They are not metastatic cancers, which have traveled from a distant organ, but originate in the liver itself. People who abuse alcohol, have hepatitis B or C, and have autoimmune diseases that attack the liver, are at risk for this cancer.

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