Stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer, is a type of cancer that originates in the cells lining the stomach. It is the fifth most common cancer worldwide, with an estimated 1 million new cases diagnosed each year. While stomach cancer can occur at any age, it is most common in people over the age of 50.

Symptoms of stomach cancer can be difficult to identify in its early stages, as they may be like those of other gastrointestinal conditions. Some of the most common symptoms include:

  • Abdominal pain or discomfort
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite and weight loss
  • Bloating or feeling full after eating small amounts of food
  • Heartburn or indigestion

The exact cause of stomach cancer is not known, but there are several factors that may increase a person’s risk, including:

  • Age: stomach cancer is more common in people over the age of 50
  • Gender: men are more likely to develop stomach cancer than women
  • Family history: having a close relative with stomach cancer increases the risk
  • Diet: a diet high in smoked, salted, or preserved foods may increase the risk
  • Infection with H. pylori bacteria
  • Smoking: smokers are at increased risk for stomach cancer
  • Gastritis or other conditions affecting the stomach lining

Diagnosis of stomach cancer usually begins with a physical exam, followed by a series of tests, including:

  • Endoscopy: a procedure in which a thin, flexible tube with a camera is inserted into the stomach to examine the lining
  • Biopsy: removal of a small piece of tissue for examination under a microscope
  • Imaging tests, such as X-rays, CT scans, and MRI scans
  • Blood tests to check for the presence of cancer markers

Treatment of stomach cancer depends on the stage and location of the cancer, as well as the overall health of the patient. Some of the most common treatments include:

  • Surgery: removal of the cancerous tissue, which may involve removing part of the stomach or the entire stomach
  • Chemotherapy: the use of drugs to kill cancer cells
  • Radiation therapy: the use of high-energy radiation to kill cancer cells
  • Targeted therapy: drugs that target specific genetic mutations that drive the growth of cancer cells

The prognosis for stomach cancer varies, depending on the stage of the cancer and the overall health of the patient. Early detection and treatment can improve the chances of a successful outcome.

Overall, stomach cancer is a serious condition that requires prompt diagnosis and treatment. If you are experiencing any symptoms that may be related to stomach cancer, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible. With early detection and treatment, many people with stomach cancer can achieve a full recovery.


  1. International Agency for Research on Cancer. (2021). Stomach cancer. Retrieved from
  2. American Cancer Society. (2021). Stomach cancer. Retrieved from
  3. National Cancer Institute. (2021). Stomach cancer treatment (PDQ®)–health professional version. Retrieved from

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