Stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer, occurs when abnormal cells in the inner layer of the stomach start growing uncontrollably. These extra cells form a mass called a tumor. Stomach cancer can develop in any part of the stomach and can originate from different types of stomach cells, such as hormone-making cells, cells of the inner lining, or immunological cells.
Stomach cancer has the potential to spread to other parts of the body. It usually starts by spreading to nearby lymph nodes and can further spread through the lymphatic system. In later stages, it may spread to other organs like the liver, bones, and lungs through the bloodstream.
If you’re concerned about stomach cancer, it’s a good idea to reach out to a knowledgeable gastroenterologist at The Gut Clinic UK who can provide expert guidance and care.
The specific cause of stomach cancer is not fully understood, but there are certain factors that can increase the chances of developing it. These factors include:
– High sodium diet: Consuming a lot of salty foods can raise the risk of stomach cancer.
– Helicobacter pylori infection: This bacterial infection in the stomach can increase the likelihood of developing stomach cancer.
– Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD): Chronic acid reflux, where stomach acid flows back into the esophagus, may raise the risk of stomach cancer.
– Obesity: Being overweight or obese can contribute to a higher risk of developing stomach cancer.
– Family history: If you have close relatives who have had stomach cancer, it can increase your own risk.
– Smoking and tobacco use: Tobacco products, including smoking cigarettes and chewing tobacco, are known to significantly raise the risk of stomach cancer.
If you are at an increased risk of developing stomach cancer due to these factors or others, it is advisable to consult a specialist who can provide guidance on screening and preventive measures. Early detection and appropriate prevention strategies can help in managing and reducing the risk of stomach cancer.
The treatment for stomach cancer depends on the type and stage of the cancer, as well as your age and overall health. The main treatment options are surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.
Surgery is the most common approach. There are three types of surgeries used for stomach cancer:
– Endoscopic mucosal resection: This is a minimally invasive procedure used for early-stage cancer. The cancerous tissue is removed from the stomach using an endoscope, which is a long flexible tube with a camera. It doesn’t involve any cuts on the body.
– Subtotal gastrectomy: This surgery removes a part of the stomach, usually when the cancer is in the lower or upper part. Sometimes, a part of the esophagus and nearby lymph nodes are also removed. The remaining part of the stomach is reattached.
– Total gastrectomy: This surgery removes the entire stomach along with nearby lymph nodes. The small intestine is then used to create a new stomach. It is done when the cancer has spread throughout the stomach.
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy may be given after surgery to kill any remaining cancer cells and prevent the cancer from coming back.
Possible complications of stomach cancer surgery include bleeding, blood clots, damage to nearby organs, and problems with digestion and vitamin deficiencies.
After surgery, regular follow-up visits are important to monitor for any signs of recurrence. Vitamin B12 levels may be monitored and injections given if the upper part of the stomach is removed. You may also be referred to a nutritionist to plan your diet, as the size of the new stomach may be smaller.
It’s crucial to have ongoing care and support to manage the effects of treatment and ensure the best possible outcome.
FIND A SPECIALIST
Find a specialist for your gut problem.
The Gut Clinic UK is a one of largest physician-led platform renowned for its exceptional Gut specialists in the United Kingdom. We take pride in our rigorous selection process for specialists, ensuring that only the most qualified and experienced professionals join our platform.
Our specialists actively engage with patients, providing them with clear explanations, answering their questions, and involving them in the decision-making process.