Gastric Cancer develops when a tumour is found within the stomach due to abnormal growth tissues and affects the cell lining. Essentially, this cancer can spread through the stomach walls and cause ulcers surrounding the affected area.
It is still not known as to what causes stomach cancer. However, this disease is more common in men as compared to the female gender and affects those in their 60s and 70s.
Other risks include:
- Individuals who are older than 60 years of age
- Consume substantial smoked food, salted fish and meat, and pickled foods. (consuming more fruits and vegetables high in vitamins A and C reduces the risk of stomach cancer
- Family history with stomach cancer
- Have a certain type of anaemia which means you are unable to absorb vitamin B12 (pernicious anaemia)
- Long-term inflammation of the stomach (chronic gastritis)
- Smoke tobacco and drinking alcohol
- A chronic infection of the stomach known as Helicobacter Pylori. If H.Pylori infection goes untreated, the inflammation can spread and cause chronic gastritis.
Early onset of Stomach Cancer might not show any symptoms. Over a certain period of time, common symptoms might include:
- Chronic abdominal pain
- Lack of appetite
- Weight loss
- Other health problems can cause stomach pain (dyspepsia), which includes acid reflux or gastritis
- Feeling full even after eating minimal amounts of food
Less common symptoms of stomach cancer include:
- Black stools indicates sign of bleeding
- Difficulty in swallowing
These treatment includes:
- Undergoing surgery to remove part or all of your stomach, or to reduce any complications due to the tumour. This is vital especially towards the later stages of the condition.
- Chemotherapy, alternatively radiation therapy post surgery, to reduce the symptoms if you are unable to have surgery
- Radiation therapy (high-energy X-Rays), sometimes with chemotherapy to destroy any cancer cells that are still existing post surgery
- Targeted therapy to stop the abnormal cancer cells from spreading and growing