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How Can Stomach Cancer Be Detected

Is Gastric Cancer Curable

Dr. David Samadi – Can Prostate Cancer Be Detected Using A Urine Test?

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Ansumana Schmiederer

Symptoms & Warning Signs of Cancer

  • Change in bowel or bladder habits.
  • A sore that does not heal.
  • Unusual bleeding or discharge.
  • Thickening or lump in the breast or elsewhere.
  • Indigestion or difficulty in swallowing.
  • Obvious change in a wart or mole.
  • Nagging cough or hoarseness.

How Can You Treat Stomach Cancer

The treatments for stomach cancer vary depending on the type of cancer you have, its location in the body, if it is advanced and your personalized care plan. At The University of Kansas Cancer Center, we offer that may provide new treatment options for stomach cancer.

Possible options include:

  • : High-energy X-rays to destroy cancer cells, typically done using a machine outside the body.
  • : Using one or more drugs to destroy cancer cells by preventing cancer cell growth.
  • Surgery: GI surgery is typically a minimally invasive procedure. The surgeon removes the tumor, as well as some surrounding healthy tissue to determine the extent of disease.
  • Targeted therapy: Treatment that targets the genes, proteins or tissue that supports the cancerous cell growth and survival. Targeted therapy blocks the growth and spread of cancer cells and minimizes damage to healthy cells.

Other Types Of Stomach Cancer

There are some less common and rare types of stomach cancer which include:

  • Lymphomas. These are cancers which arise from the lymphatic tissue within the wall of the stomach.
  • Sarcomas. These are cancers which arise from the muscle or connective tissue within the wall of the stomach.
  • Carcinoid cancers. These are cancers which arise from cells in the stomach lining which make hormones.

The rest of this leaflet only discusses adenocarcinoma of the stomach.

See separate leaflet called Cancer for more general information about cancer.

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Signs Vs Symptoms Of Cancer

Signs and symptoms of disease can be two different things:

  • A sign is something that can be observed by another person, such as a change in skin color or wheezing.
  • A symptom is something you feel, such as fatigue or pain, that isnt obvious to others.

The nature of cancer signs and symptoms differ greatly, depending on where the cancer is located.

Bladder cancer, for instance, causes blood in the urine, while brain cancer triggers terrible headaches.

What Are The Different Types Of Stomach Cancer

9 Warning Signs of Stomach Cancer Early Detection and ...

Stomach cancer, also known as , is the name for a category of cancer. There are many different types of stomach cancer:

  • Adenocarcinoma: Adenocarcinoma is the most common type of gastric cancer, comprising more than 90% of all stomach cancers. Carcinoma that occurs in the innermost lining of the stomach.
  • : Cancer of the immune system that accounts for 4% of all stomach cancer, which is not from the mucosa of the stomach lining. It is broken up into primary and secondary lymphoma of the stomach.
  • Primary lymphoma involves the stomach and can eventually affect the lymph nodes, bone marrow and other parts of the body.
  • Secondary lymphoma initially involves other parts of the body, like circulating blood, lymph nodes, bone marrow and other organs. Secondarily, cancer spreads to the stomach.
  • Gastrointestinal Stroma Tumor: A kind of soft tissue sarcoma that can grow in the stomachs connective tissue.
  • Neuroendocrine cancer: Also known as carcinoid tumors, neuroendocrine cancer originates from cells in the intestines endocrine and nervous systems.
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    How Endoscopy Detects Stomach Cancer

    In the early stages ofstomach cancer, many patients experience few or no symptoms. Because the lack of symptomsmakes stomach cancer difficult to detect, doctors often diagnose thedisease at more advanced stages. By that point, it is more challenging totreat.

    Johns Hopkins gastroenterologistSaowanee Ngamruengphong, M.D., explains how doctors look at the stomach lining without performingsurgery. The endoscopic procedure helps screen high-risk patients anddiagnose this disease earlier.

    Symptoms Of Stomach Cancer

    It is important for patients who are at a high risk of developing stomach cancer, such as those with a helicobacter pylori infection , to consult their doctors when it comes to potential symptoms. Early signs of stomach cancer may include:

    • Nausea and vomiting: Especially regurgitating solid food shortly after eating. Vomit can sometimes contain blood.
    • Feeling full after eating a small amount : Many cancer patients experience the feeling of fullness in their upper abdomen after eating small amounts of food.
    • Bloody stools: Some patients experience rectal bleeding, which can be detected by noticing black, tar-looking blood in their stool, toilet bowl or on their toilet paper. This indicates bleeding from the stomach or upper portion of the small intestine.
    • Unexplained weight loss: Patients may experience a lack of appetite and sudden or unexplained weight loss.
    • Stomach pain: Abdominal pain or discomfort above the navel may be a sign of a stomach tumor. Swelling and fluid build up in the abdomen also can be caused by stomach cancer.

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    Surgery To Ease Your Symptoms

    If your stomach cancer has spread beyond your stomach, it may not be possible to remove it using surgery.

    However, if your stomach has been significantly affected by cancer it can cause a blockage, which prevents food from being properly digested. A blocked stomach can cause symptoms such as stomach pain, vomiting and feeling very full after eating.

    If your stomach is blocked, there are a few options:

    • stenting a stent is a plastic or wire mesh tube inserted through the oesophagus using an endoscope under local anaesthetic after being inserted, the stent will be expanded and open up the stomach
    • partial or total gastrectomy to remove the blockage and improve your symptoms

    Signs And Symptoms Of Stomach Cancer

    Diagnosis and Detection of Stomach Cancer

    Stomach cancer may not cause symptoms in the early stages and the symptoms of stomach cancer are usually common for other medical conditions. This is why stomach cancer is often diagnosed when the cancer is more advanced. There are several possible symptoms:

    • Unexplained weight loss or loss of appetite.
    • Difficulty swallowing.

    Having one or more of these risk factors doesnt mean you will develop stomach cancer. Often there is no clear reason for getting stomach cancer. If you are worried about your risk factors, ask your doctor for advice.

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    How Stomach Cancer Spreads

    There are 3 ways stomach cancer can spread:

    • directly the cancer can spread from the stomach into nearby tissues and organs, such as the pancreas, colon, small intestine and peritoneum
    • through the lymphatic system the lymphatic system is a series of glands located throughout your body, similar to the blood circulatory system the glands produce specialised cells needed by your immune system to fight infection
    • through the blood which can cause the cancer to spread from the stomach to other parts of the body, most commonly the liver

    Stomach cancer that spreads to another part of the body is known as metastatic stomach cancer.

    Stomach Cancer Screening In People At Increased Risk

    The benefits of screening might outweigh the risks in some people who are at increased risk for stomach cancer because they have certain risk factors . For example, upper endoscopy might be recommended at regular intervals in these people.

    If you have risk factors that might increase your risk of stomach cancer, talk to your doctor about the possible pros and cons of stomach cancer screening for you.

    Screening isn’t usually recommended for people in families with hereditary diffuse gastric cancer . Instead, doctors often recommend that people who have changes in the CDH1 gene that causes this syndrome consider having their stomach removed , because their risk of stomach cancer is very high.

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    How Long Can Stomach Cancer Go Undetected

    While stomach cancer is relatively rare when compared to other types of cancer, it is difficult to detect in its early stages because it often produces no symptoms. As the cancer progresses, the symptoms that do appear can be misdiagnosed as normal gastrointestinal issues. As a result, stomach cancer can go undetected for years before the symptoms become concerning enough to warrant diagnostic testing.

    Risks Of Stomach Cancer Screening

    Stomach Cancer is a Silent Killer

    Screening tests have risks.

    The risks of stomach cancer screening include the following:

    Finding stomach cancer may not improve health or help you live longer.

    Screening may not improve your health or help you live longer if you have advancedstomach cancer.

    Some cancers never cause symptoms or become life-threatening, but if found by a screening test, the cancer may be treated. It is not known if treatment of these cancers would help you live longer than if no treatment were given, and treatments for cancer may have serious side effects.

    False-negative test results can occur.

    Screening test results may appear to be normal even though stomach cancer is present. A person who receives a false-negative result may delay seeking medical care even if there are symptoms.

    False-positive test results can occur.

    Screening test results may appear to be abnormal even though no cancer is present. A false-positive test result can cause anxiety and is usually followed by more tests and procedures which also have risks.

    Side effects may be caused by the screening test itself.

    Upper endoscopy may cause the following rare, but serious, side effects:

    • A small hole in the esophagus or stomach.
    • Heart problems.

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    Treatment Of Stomach And Intestinal Cancer In Cats

    Treatment will depend on the type and stage of the cancer. Surgery is required for most types of gastrointestinal cancers, apart from lymphoma. Gastrointestinal lymphoma may be partially treated through surgery, but will typically require chemotherapy to ensure the best prognosis possible.

    Before surgery, your vet will run some standard tests, including a blood chemistry profile, blood count, and urinalysis. They may also perform additional x-rays to ensure the cancer hasnt spread to other organs. The surgery itself will usually involve the partial removal of the stomach and/or affected intestine. The veterinary surgeon will then reconnect the stomach to the intestine. Since radiation therapy can harm nearby organs, this is not usually recommended for most cases of gastrointestinal cancer.

    Causes Of Stomach And Intestinal Cancer In Cats

    The cause of stomach and intestinal cancer in cats will depend on the type of cancer and where it originated. As with most types of cancer anywhere in the body, gastrointestinal cancers are caused when cells begin to grow at an uncontrolled rate. Lymphoma, in particular, may be caused by a previous bout of feline leukemia virus or the immunodeficiency virus. The link, however, is not fully understood by researchers.

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    Genetic Causes Of Stomach Cancer

    While the majority of cases are sporadic, there are forms of hereditary stomach cancer. Approximately 15% of these cancers occur in patients with a family history of cancer. Some of these cases are caused by a hereditary cancer syndrome. Lynch syndrome, or Hereditary Nonpolyposis Colorectal Cancer is associated with an increased risk of colon, uterine, and stomach cancer. Hereditary Diffuse Gastric cancer is associated with a high risk of a rare form of cancer called diffuse gastric cancer as well as an increased risk for lobular breast cancer. Familial Adenomatous Polyposis, Li-Fraumeni syndrome, and Peutz-Jeghers syndrome are also associated with an increased risk for stomach cancer. All of these conditions are inherited in an autosomal dominant pattern, which means that there is a 50% risk for each family member to inherit the gene mutation associated with one of those conditions.

    If you have a family history of cancer or a personal diagnosis of cancer of this type in addition to family history, it is recommended to meet with a genetic counselor. If a genetic counselor assesses your family history, you may qualify for genetic testing. If your genetic test comes back positive, a genetic counselor will explain what the result means and how to move forward. In hereditary cancer syndromes where the risk of cancer is high, it may be recommended to remove your stomach before cancer is detected.

    When Do Signs And Symptoms First Appear

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    Typically, cancer signs and symptoms first appear when the cancerous tumor or mass has grown large enough that it begins to push against nearby organs and tissue, blood vessels, and nerves.

    This can lead to pain, a change in how the nearby organs function, or both. A brain tumor pressing against the optic nerve will affect vision, for example.

    Some cancers are fast moving, such as liver and pancreatic cancers. Prostate cancer, however, is usually slow moving. This is why many older men with prostate cancer forego treatment theyre more likely to die with prostate cancer than because of it.

    Screenings for certain cancers should be part of your normal preventive healthcare. These include cancers of the:

    • prostate
    • cervix
    • skin

    Your age, sex, family history, and your own medical history will dictate when routine screenings should begin and how often they should be done.

    If youre concerned about symptoms associated with various cancers, then you shouldnt hesitate to see your doctor. You can connect to a physician in your area using the Healthline FindCare tool.

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    Can Stomach Cancer Be Detected Through Blood Test

    stomach cancerblood testbloodtotestscancerfoundto

    Likewise, people ask, how do you test for stomach cancer?

    In addition to a physical examination, the following tests may be used to diagnose stomach cancer:

  • Biopsy.
  • Molecular testing of the tumor.
  • Endoscopy.
  • Computed tomography scan.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging .
  • Secondly, how long does it take to diagnose stomach cancer? Tests for stomach cancerThis is a test that looks at the lining of your food pipe , stomach and duodenum . If your GP thinks you may have cancer, you should be seen at the hospital within 2 weeks.

    Also Know, what is the first sign of stomach cancer?

    Early Stage Stomach Cancer SymptomsSymptoms may include: Unexplained weight loss. Abdominal pain or vague pain just above the belly button area. Indigestion, heartburn or vomiting.

    Does stomach cancer hurt all the time?

    Feeling full: Many stomach cancer patients experience a sense of “fullness” in the upper abdomen after eating small meals. Stomach pain: Abdominal discomfort or pain in the abdomen above the navel may be a symptom of a stomach tumor. Also, swelling or fluid build-up in the abdomen may also be caused by stomach cancer.

    Conditions A Gastroscopy Can Detect

    Coeliac Disease

    Coeliac disease is a condition in which the lining of the small intestine becomes damaged when it is exposed to even small amounts of gluten a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and oats.

    As a result, affected patients absorb food and nutrients poorly. This can result in bowel symptoms and deficiencies of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.

    Coeliac disease is diagnosed by a gastroscopy. During the gastroscopy if your specialist suspects coeliac disease, tiny samples are taken from your small bowel and sent to the lab for analysis to confirm if you have the disease.

    Coeliac disease is successfully treated by removing all foods containing gluten from the diet. This is called a gluten-free diet. Following a gluten-free diet after the diagnosis of coeliac disease should allow an improvement in symptoms and restoration of health.

    Gastro-Oesophageal Reflux Disease

    Reflux is due to stomach acid rising up to the oesophagus where it can cause pain in your chest and inflammation that your specialist can see when you have a gastroscopy.

    Heartburn is very common. Almost everyone has it at some time. It is a feeling of discomfort or burning or even pain felt rising up from the lower chest to the neck. Some people call it indigestion. Doctors call it gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, or reflux or GORD for short.


    Infection appears to be life long unless treated with medications to eradicate it.

    Oesophageal Stricture and Dilatation

    Barretts Oesophagus

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    Medical History Physical Exam And Tests To Look For Bleeding

    When taking your medical history, the doctor will ask about your symptoms and possible risk factors to see if they might suggest stomach cancer or another cause. The physical examcan give your doctor information about possible signs of stomach cancer or other health problems. In particular, the doctor will feel your belly for anything abnormal.

    The doctor might order a blood test to look for anemia , which could be caused by the cancer bleeding into the stomach. A test might also be done to look for blood in your stool that can’t be seen by the naked eye, which could also be a sign of bleeding in the stomach.

    If your doctor thinks you might have stomach cancer or another type of stomach problem, he or she will likely refer you to a gastroenterologist , who will examine you and might do further testing.

    Types Of Cancers That Are More Likely To Go Undetected

    Gastric cancer

    Some cancers are more easily detected than others. For example, certain types of skin cancer can be diagnosed initially just by visual inspection though a biopsy is necessary to confirm the diagnosis.

    But other cancers can form and grow undetected for 10 years or more, as one study found, making diagnosis and treatment that much more difficult.

    This table provides an overview of common cancers that often display little or no symptoms early on, and how theyre typically detected and diagnosed:

    Type of cancer

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    How Can You Detect Stomach Cancer Early

    Be sure to contact your medical provider if you feel like something is not right. There are screening tests for stomach cancer when people are at risk for or are experiencing signs and symptoms. Diagnostic evaluations for gastric cancer include:

    • Complete medical history and physical exam
    • Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy to view the esophagus, stomach and small intestine after sedation. A small, flexible tube is inserted into the mouth with a tiny camera on the end that allows the doctor to see inside your stomach.
    • Biopsy of stomach tissue to be evaluated under a microscope
    • CT scan to visualize organs during X-ray
    • Endoscopic ultrasound to diagnose and treat stomach cancer at the same time by visualizing organs and nearby blood vessels
    • Positron emission tomography scan to illuminate cancer cells. A radioactive sugar tracer is used because cancer cells use more sugar than healthy cells and the tracer illuminates the cancer cells.

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