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20. Why is regular screening for liver cancer important?

Many doctors themselves do not know about the importance of regular screening for liver cancer if they have hepatitis B. This is a sad story about Dr. Mark Lim, an internist in South San Francisco. He was told by his professor doctor that he was a “healthy carrier.” He never was advised about the importance of screening and they told him that oh maybe when you get to the age of 60 you may need to screen for liver cancer. But that is the perspective of a Caucasian chronically infected person who most likely got infected while they were in their 20’s and 30’s. But for Asian Americans who got infected at birth or early childhood, they run the risk of developing cancer much earlier in life. So he actually one day in the park developed acute belly pain. He went back to his own emergency room and found that he had diffused cancer in both lobes of the liver. And even though he wasn’t my patient, he saw one of our bus ads in the city. He came down and talked to me and said well if I had saw you about a few years ago, I might still be alive. And he actually wanted to tell his story to educate his fellow colleagues because he knew none of his colleagues at the same institution in South San Francisco were routinely screening the patients for hep B or routinely screening the hep B carriers for liver cancer. So he told his story which was published in the San Francisco Chronicle and he actually really wanted to continue to help, even when he was dying from liver cancer. Unfortunately, he died just before his 32nd birthday.