Cirrhosis of the Liver Community
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Avatar universal

Can Harvoni cause liver tumors?

I just finished 24 weeks of Harvoni and I am 4 months clear of Hep C. I have had ultrasounds done on my abdomen every six months and had one done right before starting Harvoni. After the 24 weeks, I had another ultrasound done and it showed 2 masses on my liver. I then had an MRI and CT scan to verify that the tumor is Cancer. I am scheduled for a fine needle biopsy to categorize the type of Cancer.
How is it possible that in 6 months I could have a 7 cm mass and a 3 cm mass on my liver that precludes me from having a transplant? Is it possible the Harvoni had a role in this change?
The doctor thought is must have metastasized  from another place, but the CT scan disproved that idea. How could 2 tumors show up in 6 months and be that large? It seems incredible that it could grow so quickly.
AFP normal and ALT and AST are normal for the first time in 30 years. I also went through Interferon Ribavirin therapy for 72 WEEKS in 2008 and 2009. It didn't work so I went to Harvoni and now I have terminal cancer.
Anyone have an idea of what to do next?
9 Responses
6708370 tn?1471493810
I believe that Hector may best be able to answer your question

Were you receiving your routine every 6 months ultrasound to detect liver cancer during treatment?
446474 tn?1446351282
COMMUNITY LEADER
Unfortunately cirrhosis cause by hepatitis C is the main cause of liver cancer (HCC) in the US. It is not common but it can happen for two tumors of that size to develop within 6 months. Ultrasound is not 100%accurate for diagnosing HCC (neither is CT or MRI for that matter, but they are higher resolution than an ultrasound). In a cirrhotic liver the cirrhotic liver tissue abnormalities can often mask the cancer. Meaning it can be difficult to differentiate between the two, the cancer and the nodules of a cirrhotic liver.

Sadly curing hepatitis C doesn't instantly cure the cirrhosis which is the cause for the development of HCC. It is the combination of hepatitis C caused cirrhosis that causes liver cancer. In fact if the cancer hadn't already started developing, being cured of hep C would have greatly reduced the risk of developing liver cancer. This is another reason for people with cirrhosis to get treated and cured so they can reduce the risk of developing liver cancer. The risk doesn't totally go away, because anyone with cirrhosis can develop liver cancer but it is greatly reduced from 3-5% per year down to about 1% per year..

What to do?
Get in touch with your nearest liver transplant center ASAP. Tell them of your situation and get your medical records sent to them. They will see what they can do. Hopefully they will be able to get you within transplant criteria (size and number of tumors) by treating with HCC treatment ( TransArterial Chemoembolization (TACE), Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA)) and downsizing the tumors until you are able to get a liver transplant. Liver transplantation is only cure for HCC in someone with complete cirrhosis.

If you more details tell me where you are and I can help you to contact a liver transplant center near you.

Hang in there.
Hector
2 Comments
same thing is happening to my husband!  10 months post Harvoni and now he has 2 Large Liver Tumors, inoperable.  NO CANCER in March and in Oct, 6 months to live! mauilance, I am shocked too!  How can this grow so fast and I strongly believe Harvoni has played a huge role in this  patti
My husband was just diagnosed with two tumors and its been 6 to 8 months after taking harvoni. 3 weeks ago he had an aneurysm right at the tumor area and had to have the the bleed cauterized. Thats when they found out he had the tumors. He lost two pints of blood because of the aneurysm and had to get a blood transfusion. Prior to the harvoni he had nothing wrong with his liver. Except for the hepatitis C that was in remission. Now he is going to undergo surgery on Monday to remove the tumor which is against a main artery in the liver. The doctor said there is only a 20 to 30% recovery rate after chemo.
317787 tn?1473362051
I am so sorry to hear, Hector is right, please do what he says as soon as you can.  We have a member on here Crossroads/Karen who treated got to SVR then cancer was discovered.  Her doctors did the procedures that Hector mentioned kept her well enough for her to get the transplant back in April.
Hector went through an arduous journey himself and just celebrated his 2 year anniversary for his transplant.  We are so so lucky to have him here with us.  He is the most knowledgeable person you could hear from.
If you would like ,Karen has a story of her journey which I found comforting
Ihelpc is the name of her blog and she describes it all.  Very moving story.

As Hector said, hang in there. Dee
1 Comments
can hepc come back after you take harvoni i was diagnoised with ciirrhosis in 2004 and i took harvoni in 2015 and i am worse now my memory is almost gone swelling is terrible i can't concentrate, dizziness, terrible headaches. I have not been back to a doctor in 1yr, i don't think there is anything they can do. I have so much wrong its impossible to list all of them..Does anyone feel as bad as i do?
Avatar universal
What type of cancer were you diagnosed with? My father took harvoni last year and was cleared of Hep C at the end of treatment. This summer after a follow up scan showed tumors in his liver he was diagnosed with hepatocellular carcinoma (there were several weeks between the initial scan, liver biopsy, other scans, & diagnosis). He sought a second opinion (in a different city at a larger hospital) about 4-6 weeks after original diagnosis and was told he actually has cholangiocarcinoma (cancer of his bile ducts). This is a very rare cancer and is unfortunately too far along at this point to treat so he is currently on hospice. Just wondering if there could be any connection to the Harvoni.
Avatar universal
Same thing is happening to my husband!!
4 Comments
same thing with my friend. I'm beginning to think Harvoni caused them all. Should we all get together and sue the company?
There is currently insufficient evidence to link DAA treatment to liver cancer. Patients with liver cirrhosis are at an annual risk of 20% per year of developing liver cancer simply because they have liver cirrhosis regardless of treatment status. The risk of HCC is cirrhosis.

It is very difficult to discern if those patients would have developed liver cancer with or without DAA treatments.
A study is needed to make the link and in the meantime our loved ones will become the statistics in that large study, which, in my opinion, will prove that Harvoni is the cause.
I talked with Fleming Nolen Jez at 1-800-448-0883 about my problems with Harvoni.  I'm 34, negative CT no problems or symptoms and not until I finished taking Harvoni did I have tumors in my liver.
Avatar universal
How are you Doing? It has been over a year since your post and new studies are out that show an aggressive form of HCC ha--Enos to some people with advanced liver disease after DAA treatment. Please update us.
Dr. Greg
Avatar universal
This is happening to my dad right now! It has been about a year from his treatment with harvoni! Went in for a scan in June everything was great! 3 weeks ago rushed to the hospital for retaining bam cancer stage for liver bile ducts... death sentence
Avatar universal
Pray, I took harvoni july 2017 until October  2017. I am grateful that the Toronto general hospital said that thru blood work that virus is not detectable, but my mind is f#####d, Concentration, confused and angry and frustrated. Talked to nurse if I could write to some medical body to express side effect to no avail. She set up appointment at same hospital to see a shrink. He recommended take anti-depressants.

Can not win. I feel this is nothing more than an international drug cabel.

Wish i never took it and stuck with herbal and homeopathic remedies.

My bad
Avatar universal
Yeah same thing is happening to my mom and just talked to a guy today that had the same as you and had surgery for two tumors in his neck. Something is seriously wrong when fast growing tumors are killing you all quicker. The truth needs to be out there.
2 Comments
I believe a lawsuit is in order to stop the makers of harvoni from killing more people and its not about the money. There is not enough money in the world to replace my mother. Her liver numbers were fine before and now she has a 3 inch tumor that grew in 6 months? SOMETHING IS DEFINETLY WRONG HERE.
June 15, 2017 mom is dead. Please dont take harvoni and if you did demand an mri every 3 months and God bless you and my mom.
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