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What Is a Lesion on the Liver?

By Jennifer Lanier ; Updated July 27, 2017

Lesions on the liver are increasingly being detected during medical tests for unrelated concerns. Liver lesions, which are uncommon in people under the age of 40, can be of many types and causes.


Lesion is a broad medical term that might refer to a wound, sore, ulcer, tumor, cyst or some other type of tissue damage.


Liver lesions are usually detected during an MRI or ultrasound. Sometimes, biopsy is needed to determine the type of lesion and whether or not it may be cancerous.


Although most lesions cause no symptoms, a feeling of abdominal fullness is common when cysts are present. Infectious liver abscesses can produce symptoms of fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and loss of appetite.

Risk Factors

Diabetes, hepatitis C, obesity, malnourishment, compromised immunity, parasitic infection, dental abscesses and hereditary predisposition are considered risk factors for the development of liver lesions.


Most liver lesions are benign, or non-cancerous, and usually require no treatment, according to the California Pacific Medical Center. However, if pain or other symptoms are present, then surgical resection may be required.

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