Stomach cancer

Stomach cancer starts anywhere in the wall of the stomach - or inside the stomach itself. It’s also known as gastric cancer.

 

What is stomach cancer?

Stomach cancer starts anywhere in the wall of the stomach – or inside the stomach itself. It’s also known as gastric cancer. It’s twice as more common in men than women, and about half of stomach cancers affect people aged over 75. In many cases, it’s linked to lifestyle factors.

The most common type of stomach tumours are adenocarcinomas; others include lymphomas and leiomyosarcomas.
 

Causes of stomach cancer

You’re more likely to have stomach cancer if:

• You are infected with Helicobacter pylori bacteria (although this isn’t harmful to everyone)
• You are overweight or obese
• You eat a lot of processed meat including bacon and sausages
• You smoke
• Your diet is high in salt
• Your diet is low in fruit and vegetables
• You work with certain chemicals
• You have a family history of stomach cancer
• You’ve had radiation therapy for other diseases including testicular cancer, cervical cancer, breast cancer, head and neck cancers

Symptoms of stomach cancer

Stomach cancer is often detected late as the signs may not be obvious. Symptoms include:

Acidity and heartburn

Anaemia (caused by bleeding in the stomach)

Feeling bloated after you’ve eaten

Indigestion

Loss of appetite and weight loss

Nausea and vomiting

Stomach pain and swelling

Problems swallowing

Trapped wind

Having one or more of these symptoms doesn’t mean you have cancer but it’s best to ask your doctor for advice. The sooner your cancer is detected, the better the chances of treating it successfully.

Tests and diagnosis

Your doctor will discuss your symptoms and carry out a physical examination. Diagnostic tests may include:

  • Endoscopic ultrasound: an ultrasound probe to provide detailed pictures of the stomach
  • Endoscopy: to examine the inside of the stomach. Tissue samples may be taken for analysis
  • Laparoscopy
  • Scans including CT, MRI and ultrasound
  • X-ray

Treatments we offer

Depending on how advanced your stomach cancer is, your specialist doctor will propose treatment options such as surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy.
 
 

Radiotherapy kills cancer cells. It’s used in the early stages of cancer treatment or after it has started to spread. It can also be used to relieve pain and discomfort from cancer that has spread.

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Chemotherapy is medication that treats your cancer. The drugs kill cancer cells, preventing them from dividing and spreading further.

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Radiotherapy kills cancer cells. It’s used in the early stages of cancer treatment or after it has started to spread. It can also be used to relieve pain and discomfort from cancer that has spread.

Read more

Chemotherapy is medication that treats your cancer. The drugs kill cancer cells, preventing them from dividing and spreading further.

Read more

Meet our doctors

Everything we do is focused on designing better care for our patients. With a network of 12 specialist oncology treatment centres across the UK, we provide the most up-to-date treatments and technology as standard.

We attract and retain some of the most experienced doctors in the country, who all have a passion for improving patient outcomes and specialise in the treatment of different types of cancer.

Meet our doctors

Search for a centre near you

Maidstone

17 Kings Hill Avenue, Kings Hill, West Malling, ME19 4UA

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Birmingham

Little Aston Hall Drive, Sutton Coldfield, B74 3BF

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Nottingham

The Park Centre for oncology, Sherwood Lodge Drive, Burntstump Country Park, Nottingham, NG5 8RX

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Portsmouth

Bartons Road, Havant, PO9 5NA

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Guildford

BMI St Martha Oncology Centre, 46 Harvey Road, Guildford, GU1 3XL

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Southampton

Spire Hospital, Chalybeate Close, Southampton, SO16 6UY

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Chelmsford

Springfield Cancer Centre, Lawn Lane, Chelmsford, CM1 7GU

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Elstree

Unit 710, Centennial Park, Centennial Avenue, Elstree, Borehamwood, WD6 3SZ

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Oxford

Sandy Lane West, Peters Way, Oxford, OX4 6LB

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Milton Keynes

Sunrise Parkway, Linford Wood East, Milton Keynes, MK14 6LS

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Newmarket

The Oaks, Fordham Road, Newmarket, CB8 7XN

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Windsor

69 Alma Road, Windsor, SL4 3HD

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