Background: The increasing incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a challenging health problem worldwide with poor prognosis and limited treatment options. The association between metabolic factors and HCC has been documented, however, there is a shortage of data about this association in our locality. Therefore, we aimed to determine the pattern of lipid profile in cirrhotic patients with HCC and investigate the association between dyslipidemia and HCC.
Method: In this case-control hospital-based study, serum lipid profile [total cholesterol, triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL)] was determined in 100 patients with cirrhosis and 100 patients with cirrhosis and HCC. Multivariate analysis of HCC risk factors was done.
Results: Metabolic syndrome, hypertriglyceridemia, hypercholesterolemia, high LDL, and combined dyslipidemia were significantly more frequent in HCC patients than non-HCC patients. Low HDL and dyslipidemia were significantly associated with the late HCC stages and LDL levels were significantly correlated with α-fetoprotein levels. There was a tendency towards increasing the values of the other lipid parameters in advanced stages. Metabolic syndrome and combined dyslipidemia were associated with HCC risk.
Conclusion: Deranged lipid profiles were common in HCC patients. Metabolic syndrome and combined dyslipidemia could be potential risk factors for HCC and may offer a useful strategy for risk stratification; thus, their control can reduce the HCC burden.