Focal nodular hyperplasia (FNH) is a non-cancerous, benign liver condition characterized by the development of a firm, focal mass in the liver. It is one of the most common benign liver tumours and is often discovered incidentally during imaging tests performed for unrelated health concerns, as it typically does not cause noticeable symptoms. 


FNH is more prevalent in women and is commonly diagnosed in individuals between the ages of 20 and 50.


Causes and Risk Factors

The exact cause of FNH remains unknown, but it is believed to be related to an abnormality in the blood vessels within the liver. There are usually no known risk factors associated with the development of FNH.



In the majority of cases, focal nodular hyperplasia does not produce any symptoms. However, in rare instances, individuals with FNH may experience the following:

  • Abdominal discomfort or pain
  • A feeling of fullness or bloating in the abdomen
  • Nausea



Focal nodular hyperplasia is typically diagnosed through imaging tests, such as ultrasounds, CT scans, or MRIs, which help visualize the liver and identify any abnormalities present. These imaging tests are crucial in determining the size, location, and characteristics of the focal nodular hyperplasia.


Treatment for FNH is usually unnecessary, especially if the condition is asymptomatic and does not cause any complications. However, in cases where the diagnosis is uncertain or if the patient experiences symptoms, treatment options may include:

  1. Regular Monitoring: Periodic follow-up visits and imaging tests may be recommended to monitor any changes in the size or characteristics of the FNH.
  2. Surgery: Surgical removal of the FNH may be considered if the tumour is particularly large, symptomatic, or causing complications.


Regular consultations with a healthcare provider are essential for individuals diagnosed with focal nodular hyperplasia to ensure the condition is carefully monitored and any potential changes are promptly addressed. This allows for timely management and treatment, if necessary, to prevent any potential complications associated with FNH.

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