Alternate Names : Bile duct cancer
Cholangiocarcinoma is a cancerous (malignant) growth in one of the ducts that carries bile from the liver to the small intestine.
Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors
Cancerous tumors of the bile ducts are usually slow-growing and do not spread (metastasize) quickly. However, many of these tumors are already advanced by the time they are found.
A cholangiocarcinoma may start anywhere along the bile ducts. These tumors block off the bile ducts.
They affect both men and women. Most patients are older than 65.
Ricks for this condition include:
- Bile duct (choledochal) cysts
- Chronic biliary irritation
- History of infection with the parasitic worm, liver flukes
- Primary sclerosing cholangitis
Cholangiocarcinoma is rare. It occurs in approximately 2 out of 100,000 people.
Pictures & Images
The esophagus, stomach, large and small intestine, aided by the liver, gallbladder and pancreas convert the nutritive components of food into energy and break down the non-nutritive components into waste to be excreted.
The biliary system is comprised of the organs and duct system that create, transport, store and release bile into the duodenum for digestion. Includes the liver, gallbladder and bile ducts (named the cystic, hepatic, common, and pancreatic duct).
Review Date : 9/4/2008
Reviewed By : Sean O. Stitham, MD, private practice in Internal Medicine, Seattle, Washington; and James R. Mason, MD, Oncologist, Director, Blood and Marrow Transplantation Program and Stem Cell Processing Lab, Scripps Clinic, Torrey Pines, California. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.