What is stomach cancer?
Stomach Cancer refers to the Cancer that can originates in the cells of the stomach. The stomach is the organ that is responsible for the primary digestion of the food and lies just below the rib cage in the upper abdominal cavity. Stomach Cancers can also be referred to as gastric cancers. Cancer cells often originate within the inner lines of the stomach in the mucous-producing cells.
Some of the common types of stomach cancers include, adenocarcinoma – which originates in the inner lining of the stomach and is the most common form; lymphoma – which originates in the cells that providing immunity to the stomach and is a rare form; carcinoid cancer – which originates in the hormone producing cells of the stomach; and gastrointestinal stromal tumors –which originates in the nervous cells in the inner lining of the stomach.
What are the causes & risk factors of stomach cancer?
Stomach Cancer is caused by the genetic mutation of cells turning them from normal to abnormal cells in the stomach. The exact cause of the mutation is yet unascertained. Some of the factors that increase the risk of colon cancer are enumerated below:
- High salt diet
- Low consumption of fruits & vegetables
- Family history of colon cancer
- Excessive smoking
What are the signs & symptoms of stomach cancer?
The common symptoms of Stomach Cancer can be enumerated as the following
- Persistent heartburn or acid reflux
- Frequent abdominal pain or discomfort
- Frequent nausea
- Abdominal discomfort – gas, cramps etc.,
- Unexplained weight loss
- Excessive & frequent fatigue
How can we prevent stomach cancer?
A healthy diet is the key to the prevention of stomach cancers. The diet must be moderately salted, include high amount of fibres, fruits & vegetables. Quitting smoking and moderating alcohol content is also an important factor as is regular exercise and an overall commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
What are the treatment options for stomach cancer?
The most effective treatment for stomach cancer, that hasn’t spread to the other parts of the body, is the surgical resection of the cancerous tissues along with a margin of the healthy tissue. The doctors may also remove the nearby lymph nodes as a precaution. The surgical options for stomach cancer treatment include:
- Early stage cancer removal from stomach lining
- Removal of the portion of the stomach affected by cancer
- Removal of the entire stomach
- Removal of lymph nodes to ascertain prevalence of cancer
Radiation therapy and chemotherapy are also employed for holistic treatment of the condition.