Cancer is a word that no one ever wants to hear. It’s a diagnosis that can bring with it a lot of fear and uncertainty. But stomach cancer, while still a serious disease, has seen declining rates in recent years. In this article, we’ll take a look at what stomach cancer is, its symptoms, and how it’s treated.
What is stomach cancer?
There are many types of cancer, but stomach cancer is one of the most serious. This disease starts in the stomach and can spread to other parts of the body. The stomach is a hollow organ, located in the upper abdomen, that stores and breaks down food. Cancerous cells can form in the lining of the stomach. These cells can grow and form a tumor. The tumor can grow and spread to other parts of the body.
Cancer that starts in the stomach is called gastric cancer.
Stomach cancer is more common in men than women and usually occurs after age 50. However, incidence rates are increasing in younger adults. In fact, stomach cancer is now the fourth most common cancer worldwide.
Types of stomach cancer
There are several types of stomach cancer, however, the most common types are adenocarcinoma and lymphoma.
- Adenocarcinoma is the most common type of stomach cancer, accounting for about 95% of all cases. This type of cancer develops in the cells lining the stomach, which secrete mucus and other fluids.
- Lymphoma is a less common type of stomach cancer that develops in the immune system cells in the stomach. Lymphoma is generally more aggressive than adenocarcinoma and is more likely to spread to other parts of the body.
However, stomach cancer can cause tumors such as;
- Gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST): This type of tumor starts in the cells of the gastrointestinal tract. GISTs can be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
- Carcinoid tumors: These tumors start in the hormone-producing cells of the gastrointestinal tract. Carcinoid tumors can be benign or malignant.
Causes of stomach cancer
There are many possible causes of stomach cancer, but the exact cause is often unknown. However, some risk factors may increase your chance of developing stomach cancer. These include:
–Chronic inflammation of the stomach: This can be caused by a bacterial infection, acid reflux, or other conditions.
–Smoking: Cigarette smoking is a major risk factor for stomach cancer.
–Diet: A diet high in processed meats, salt, and nitrates has been linked to an increased risk of stomach cancer.
– Age: stomach cancer is more common in people over the age of 50.
–Gender: men are more likely to develop stomach cancer than women.
– Smoking: smokers are at an increased risk of developing stomach cancer.
– Family history: if you have a family member who has had stomach cancer, you may be at an increased risk of developing the disease.
–Medical condition – Having certain medical conditions, such as Helicobacter pylori infection or pernicious anemia
–Obesity: Being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing stomach cancer.
What is the first sign of stomach cancer?
The first sign of stomach cancer is often a change in appetite. People may feel full after eating only a small amount, or they may lose their appetite altogether. Other early symptoms include nausea, indigestion, and stomach pain. If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see your doctor for a diagnosis.
Where does stomach cancer usually start
Most stomach cancers start in the cells lining the inside of the stomach. These cells are called epithelial cells. Over time, these cancerous cells can grow to form a tumor.
Are there any symptoms of stomach cancer
There are a few different symptoms of stomach cancer that you should be aware of. These include:
-Persistent indigestion or heartburn
-Loss of appetite
-Nausea or vomiting
-Blood in your stool
– A feeling of fullness or bloating after eating only a small amount
Does stomach cancer spread fast?
Stomach cancer can spread through the blood or lymphatic system to other parts of the body, such as the liver, lungs, or bones. When stomach cancer spreads to other organs, it’s called metastatic stomach cancer. Metastatic stomach cancer is more difficult to treat and has a poorer prognosis than stomach cancer that hasn’t spread.
When to worry about stomach cancer
Stomach cancer is a relatively rare form of cancer, but it’s still important to be aware of the symptoms and risk factors. While stomach cancer can occur at any age, it’s most common in people over the age of 50. If you’re experiencing any of the previously listed symptoms, it’s important to see your doctor for a diagnosis.
Stomach cancer survival rate
The stomach cancer survival rate is the percentage of people who survive stomach cancer. The 5-year survival rate for stomach cancer is 31%. The 10-year survival rate is 21%. The 20-year survival rate is 14%.
There are many factors that affect the stomach cancer survival rate. These include the type of stomach cancer, the stage of cancer, the age of the patient, and the overall health of the patient. Treatment options also play a role in the stomach cancer survival rate. Those who receive treatment early on have a much higher chance of surviving than those who do not.
Is stomach cancer fully curable?
The short answer is yes, stomach cancer is fully curable. The majority of cases are caught early and can be treated successfully. However, the prognosis for stomach cancer that has spread to other organs is much poorer. But with early detection and treatment, stomach cancer can be cured.
Common Treatments for Stomach Cancer
If you are diagnosed with stomach cancer, there are a variety of treatment options available to you. The type of treatment that is recommended for you will depend on the stage of your cancer, as well as your overall health. Here are some common treatments for stomach cancer:
1. Surgery: Surgery is often the first line of treatment for stomach cancer. The goal of surgery is to remove the cancerous tumor from the stomach. Depending on the extent of your cancer, this may be a simple surgery or a more complex procedure.
2. Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses drugs to kill cancer cells. It can be given intravenously or in pill form and is often used in combination with surgery.
3. Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams to kill cancer cells. It can be given externally or internally, depending on the location of your tumor. Radiation therapy is often used in combination with other treatments, such as surgery and chemotherapy.
4. Targeted therapy: Targeted therapy is a newer type of cancer treatment that targets specific genes or proteins that are involved in the growth and spread of cancer cells. This type of treatment is often used in combination with other treatments.
Stomach cancer is a serious and life-threatening form of cancer. It is important to be aware of the symptoms of stomach cancer so that you can seek medical attention if you experience any of them. If you have a family history of stomach cancer, or if you are over the age of 50, you should speak to your doctor about your risk factors and whether or not you should be screened for the disease.