Information About Stomach Cancer
Stomach cancer, often also referred to as gastric cancer, can start in any part of the stomach and then spread to other parts of the body such as the esophagus, liver, lungs and lymph nodes before it is discovered. This can often be attributed to the fact that it has no noticeable early symptoms or perhaps it can be better said that the early symptoms are easily and often attributed to other causes, such as heartburn, indigestion or loss of appetite. It has been noted that people in the early stages of this cancer often find that they no longer like to eat meat.
The symptoms that show up later tend to be much more attention getting, being such things as abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, often accompanied by vomiting up blood, diarrhea or constipation, often with blood in the stools and difficulty in swallowing.
While these things don’t always mean this cancer, many times they do and it is important to be checked by a doctor for the possibility as soon as possible.
The leading cause of stomach cancer is helicobacter pylori, which is simply a fancy term for a bacteria which invades the stomach and quietly takes over. Doctors and other medical professionals are investigating the very real possibility that there is a genetic connection involved in the attacks of this bacteria.
Diet may also have a great influence on whether or not an individual gets stomach cancer. Studies seem to indicate that those persons whose diets are high in smoked foods, salted fish and meat, and pickled vegetables are more apt to be stricken with this cancer than those persons whose diets consist highly of fresh fruits and vegetables which are high in such vitamins as A and C and who seem less apt to be stricken with this cancer.
Studies have also shown that smoking tobacco increases the very real possibility of contracting stomach cancer as does the consumption of alcohol.
Stomach cancer progresses in different stages and therefore can often be treated in different ways. Stage 0, which is when this cancer is in a very early development, can be easily treated by what is called endoscopic mucosal resectin, requiring no chemotherapy or radiation. Stages 1, 1A and 1B are further progressed and require chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Stage 2 is treated similarly to stage 1, only with an additional form of chemotherapy. Stage 3 is treated in the same way as stage 2 and sometimes can be beaten. Stage 4 is when the cancer has spread through the body and in this case treatments are given, perhaps to prolong life or to improve what one might term the quality of the life.
Periodic routine checkups may reveal the presence of stomach cancer in its early stages. It is much recommended that these checkups be made before this so called silent killer begins to speak loudly.