Hepatic angiosarcoma presenting as hepatic rupture in a patient with long-term ingestion of arsenic

Sheng Yow Ho, Chiang Chin Tsai, Yi Chang Tsai, How Ran Guo

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22 Citations (Scopus)


Hepatic angiosarcoma (HAS) is rare primary mesenchymal malignancy of liver with close association to arsenic intoxication. Although the southwest coastal area of Taiwan is well known for its prevalence of arsenic intoxication from drinking well water, few cases of HAS associated with arsenic ingestion have been reported. We report a case of HAS complicated by spontaneous hepatic rupture in 68-year-old female farmer who presented with acute onset of abdominal pain and shock. The arsenic level in her drinking water had been found to be 0.12 ppm at her childhood home and 0.005 ppm at her residence from age 21 to 68 years. The total ingested arsenic was estimated to be 1.9 g, and the latent period was about 25 years with a weighted mean exposure of 0.12 mg/day. We also reviewed data collected by the National Cancer Registry Program from 1981 to 1999 and identified 25 additional reported cases. The median age of these patient was 55 years, and the male-to-female ratio was 1.9 (17:9). Whereas no case was found during this period in the blackfoot disease (BFD) endemic area, a hyperendemic area of arsenic intoxication in Taiwan, this case demonstrates the existence of cases of HAS associated with exposure to high levels of arsenic near the BFD area in Taiwan.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)374-379
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the Formosan Medical Association
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2004 May

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)


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