Summary: Gastric (stomach) cancer is a disease that can occur anywhere within the stomach. It's commonly addressed via surgery to remove the cancerous area.
Occurring almost in any location within the body, cancer is a concerning condition that results from uncontrolled and abnormal cellular growth. With November being the dedicated National Gastric Cancer Awareness Month, GI Associates & Endoscopy Center wants to educate patients on the signs and symptoms of gastric cancer and how it might be addressed. According to the American Cancer Society, about 26,000 new cases of stomach cancer are reported every year. Gastric cancer, also called stomach cancer, accounts for approximately 1.5% of initial cancer diagnoses in the nation.
Should you or someone you love become diagnosed with stomach cancer, it's essential to seek out a gastroenterologist for expert, specialized care. Contact GI Associates & Endoscopy Center in Jackson, MS to find out more.
About stomach cancer
The stomach is an essential organ in the upper abdomen where food is held and digested. If cancer forms in the internal lining of any location within the stomach, it's referred to as gastric or stomach cancer. Cancer can arise in any portion of the stomach. Among people in the United States, the condition is most commonly found at the gastroesophageal junction, or the area where the esophagus joins the stomach. The rate of stomach cancer has declined among Americans; however, it's still a major cause of cancer deaths around the world.
What are common warning signs of gastric cancer?
Gastric cancer may take more than a year or longer to develop. Because stomach cancer isn't extremely common in the U.S., there are no official healthcare organizations that advise regular assessments for people with average risk. During the early stages, cancer of the stomach generally doesn't present any signs or symptoms, but those who do notice any indications might report one or more of the following:
- Frequent nausea
- Abdominal pain
- Abdominal enlargement
- Decreased appetite
- Unexplained weight loss
Should you or a loved one experience any of these signs or symptoms, it's crucial to receive experienced care from a Jackson, MS digestive health expert as soon as possible. Contact GI Associates & Endoscopy Center to partner with a gastroenterologist.
What are some stomach cancer risk factors?
Some individuals have a greater chance of developing cancer of the stomach. These risk factors include hereditary conditions, such as Lynch syndrome. This particular health concern also raises the chance of developing colorectal cancer, pancreatic cancer, and uterine cancer. Additional factors that may increase the risk of cancer of the stomach include the following:
- Alcohol use
- Being over the age of 55
- Being overweight
- Being male
- Previous stomach surgery
- Work-related exposure
- Family history of gastric cancer
If you discover that you're at an elevated chance of gastric cancer, we urge you to consult one of our Jackson, MS gastrointestinal specialists to see about receiving routine stomach cancer screenings, like upper endoscopies. You can arrange to have an upper endoscopy and speak with a digestive health doctor by contacting GI Associates & Endoscopy Center.
How is stomach cancer treated?
Stomach cancer is frequently treated via surgical intervention. Once the malignant mass has been excised (taken out), radiation and chemotherapy could be used to help keep the cancer from returning. There are three primary surgeries for treating malignant tissue in the stomach:
- Partial (or subtotal) gastrectomy: A portion of the stomach is removed, and the surrounding sections are reattached. This type of gastrectomy could additionally include the removal of surrounding lymph nodes or other tissue.
- Total gastrectomy: With this surgical approach, the whole stomach and adjacent lymph nodes are taken out, and a new stomach is rebuilt from a portion of the small intestine.
- Gastrointestinal endoscopic mucosal resection: With this surgery, a flexible tube known as an endoscope is utilized to remove the cancerous tissue in the stomach.
Find expert care for stomach cancer in Jackson, MS
All November long, we're dedicated to spreading awareness of stomach cancer throughout our local community. If you or a family member may have stomach cancer, know that experienced help is close at hand. GI Associates & Endoscopy Center is a patient-focused group of GI physicians and a trusted name in the field of gastrointestinal health. Contact our office in Jackson, MS for more information on how a gastroenterologist can help meet your needs.