He is one of the best gastroenterology doctors I have ever visited. Took my uncle for stomach pain, the doctor did endoscopy & colonoscopy, diagnosed the problem as large intestine cancer, the doctor asked a...
The doctor is extremely professional and polite. He explains the problem patiently and does not prescribe unnecessary medication. He gives priority to the patient's well-being over everything. I Will definitely recommend him
I have referred/recommended a couple of my relatives and friends to this Dr (Dr. Srujan Kumar Dasyam). I say that the diagnosis and treatment are good and also Dr listens patiently in understanding the patient's...
Apoorva Reddy Panyala
Table Of Contents
- What is Stomach Cancer?
- What Causes Stomach Cancer?
- What are the Symptoms of Stomach Cancer?
- How is Stomach Cancer Diagnosed?
- What are the Complications of Stomach Cancer?
- What is the Treatment for Stomach Cancer?
What is Stomach Cancer?
Stomach cancer is a condition in which abnormal cells start overgrowing in the stomach. The cells can start growing in any part of the stomach, the most common part being the body of the stomach. Also called gastric cancer, it primarily affects people in their late 60s. This cancer develops slowly, so the symptoms might go unnoticed for an extended period.
What Causes Stomach Cancer?
The etiology of stomach cancer is yet not very clear. However there are certain factors that can increase the risk:
- H.Pylori infection, bacteria responsible for stomach ulcers
- Long-lasting pernicious anemia
- A diet high in pickled or salty foods
- Regular consumption of alcohol
- Stomach surgery
- Epstein-Barr virus infection
- Certain specific genes
- Working in coal or rubber industries
- Asbestos exposure
- Cases of gastric cancer in the family
- Long term gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Stomach polyps
What are the Symptoms of Stomach Cancer?
Just having these symptoms doesn’t mean it is cancer, but it increases the chances of having cancer:
- Difficulty swallowing
- Feeling bloated after eating
- Feeling full after eating modest quantities of food
- Unexplained Nausea
- Weakness or lethargy
- Stomach ache
- Unintentional weight loss
- Stools with blood
- Swollen stomach
- Constipation or diarrhoea
How is Stomach Cancer Diagnosed?
Physical examination and medical history are essential to rule out the probability of having stomach cancer. Along with biological and medical history, family history is also imperative.
Tests and procedures are:
- Upper endoscopy: A small lighted, flexible tube is inserted through the mouth in the GI tract to look for any irregularities.
- Biopsy: It can be done along with endoscopy, where a small piece of the stomach lining is taken out to study under a microscope.
- Blood test: To check if all organs are functioning correctly by measuring the level of specific enzymes in the blood.
- CT scans
- Positron emission tomography
- X-Ray with Barium swallow
What are the Complications of Stomach Cancer?
- Bleeding inside the stomach
- Cancer might spread to other organs in the bloodstream
- If cancer spreads in the liver, it can cause fluid collection in the liver, creating life-threatening conditions.
- Perforation in the stomach lining
- Partial or complete bowel obstruction
What is the Treatment for Stomach Cancer?
The treatment entirely depends on the location of the cancer and the aggressiveness, whether it is benign or malignant.
The following is the treatment regime depending on the stage of cancer:
- Early-stage cancer or Stage 0 cancer- If the tumour is small and contained inside the stomach lining, it can be removed by adding special tools to an endoscope.
- Stage 1 cancer- Involves a tumour in the stomach lining that is spread to nearby lymph nodes; treatment involves chemotherapy and chemoradiation.
- Stage 2 cancer- Cancer is spread to deeper layers of the stomach and lymph nodes. Subtotal gastrectomy forms the treatment regime.
- Stage 3 cancer- Cancer is spread to deeper layers of the stomach and nearby organs like the spleen and liver. Treatment involves chemotherapy, chemoradiation and surgery (total gastrectomy).
- Stage 4 cancer- By now, cancer is spread to distant body parts, like lungs, kidneys or brain. This is very hard to cure.
Therefore, eating healthy and maintaining a balanced lifestyle is very important.