Stomach cancer occurs when abnormal cells grow out of control in one of the three layers of the stomach. Several types of cancer can occur in the stomach. Cancer usually starts in the inner layer (where food touches the stomach) and moves into the outer layers. It can spread to nearby organs or to distant areas of the body.
Treatment depends on how far the cancer has spread and on your overall health. Surgery to take out part or all of the stomach is the most common treatment. You also may take medicines (chemotherapy) or get radiation treatments to kill the cancer cells. Sometimes people get treatment with medicines that help the body's natural defences, or immune system, fight the cancer.
Treatment with chemotherapy or radiation can make you very tired and nauseated. You may vomit or have diarrhea. It also can make your immune system weaker. This can raise your risk of infection.
When you find out that you have cancer, you may feel many emotions and may need some help coping. Seek out family, friends, and counsellors for support. You also can do things at home to make yourself feel better while you go through treatment. Call the Canadian Cancer Society (1-888-939-3333) or visit its website at www.cancer.ca for more information.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of:
July 26, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Jimmy Ruiz, MD - Hematology, Oncology
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