Stomach Cancer: About the Disease, Clinics and Alternative Treatments
Stomach cancer today is one of the most aggressive oncological diseases. Japan, Brazil, and Finland are regions with high morbidity and mortality rates from that illness. That is mainly associated with the nature of nutrition, lifestyle, and environmental factors. The disease is widespread and has a low percentage of five-year survival in the late stages (on average, 10-20%). Therefore, experts worldwide are looking for answers to how to treat stomach cancer.
About the disease
Gastric oncology can affect various parts of the stomach. The cells begin to divide uncontrollably, forming a malignant tumor.
Most people over 50 get sick. However, recently malignant tumors are increasingly found at younger ages. Therefore, informing about this illness and stomach cancer treatment is essential. According to some data, stomach cancer occurs more often in men (32%) than in women (21%). However, not all researchers agree with this.
It is important to note that early forms of stomach cancer are successfully treated. However, the tumor quickly forms metastases, so diagnosing it at the earliest stage is very important.
Causes and risk factors
Reliable causes of stomach cancer are still unknown. However, scientists believe that the bacterium Helicobacter Pylori may cause this disease. This bacterium is also considered to be the cause of peptic ulcer diseases.
- Heredity — if someone in the family has stomach cancer, then all other closes (blood) relatives are more likely to get sick by 20%;
- Unbalanced diet — the passion for smoked meats, spicy, salty, fried, and canned food increases the likelihood of illness and stomach cancer treatment;
- Long-term stomach diseases: gastritis, stomach ulcers, and polyps;
- Bacterium Helicobacter pylori in the stomach: in 1994, the World Health Organization (WHO) listed this bacterium as a first-class carcinogen;
- Work with asbestos and nickel;
- Vitamin B12 and C deficiency;
- Alcoholism and smoking.
However, these risk factors do not mean stomach cancer treatment sooner or later. Even with the coincidence of several carcinogenic factors, a person can safely live to old age and get sick, even if there are no such factors in his life in principle. According to statistics, men have a higher risk of getting sick since they have a gastric tumor one and a half or more times more often than women. Older people are also statistically more likely to get sick.
Therefore, those who belong to the described groups need to know how the disease manifests and whether stomach cancer can be cured.
What is the danger?
A tumor in the stomach can make it hard to digest food and stop it from moving to other parts of the digestive tract. The neoplasm can also spread to other organs, like the colon and pancreas, where it can grow. If the tumor is close to the esophagus, it can develop into it, making it hard for food to get to the stomach. Because of this, people lose weight until they are too tired to continue.
Stomach cancer can spread quickly to the digestive tract and grow into nearby tissues and organs (like the pancreas and small intestine) through the stomach wall. It is often made worse by necrosis and bleeding. With the flow of blood, the tumor mainly expands to the lungs and liver, and through the lymphatic system's vessels, it spreads to the lymph nodes.
The main problem of this disease is that it is detected, as a rule, in the last stages. In this case, a complete stomach cancer treatment is almost impossible, even with the most modern medical methods.
Types of Stomach Cancer
Stomach cancer has a different structure. Depending on this, its histological types are distinguished. Adenocarcinomas represent the most malignant stomach tumors (90-95%). They develop from epithelial cells.
Other malignant tumors are less common in the stomach: lymphomas (neoplasms from lymphoid tissue), gastrointestinal stromal tumors, carcinoid tumors (from hormone-producing cells), squamous cell and small cell cancers, leiomyosarcomas (malignant tumors from muscle tissue).
The main symptoms of stomach cancer
When surgical stomach cancer treatment is possible, in the early stages usually has no clinical signs.
At the time of diagnosis, most patients already have symptoms. That means that the disease is progressing. In about 50% of patients, the malignant process goes beyond the organ.
So, what systematic signs should you pay attention to identifying oncology early in life?
- general fatigue;
- the pallor of the skin;
- loss of appetite;
- loss of a sense of pleasure from eating.
The most common symptoms at the initial diagnosis include:
- Sudden unexplained weight loss.
- Abdominal pain.
- Dysphagia. Problems with swallowing food.
- Dyspepsia. The patient feels that his stomach is full.
- Stool disorders. Diarrhea and constipation are periodically noted.
- Nausea and vomiting.
If the listed symptoms are systematically manifested, you should contact a gastroenterologist and undergo a detailed check-up as soon as possible. It is better to treat stomach cancer abroad since it is in foreign clinics, according to statistics, that they achieve the maximum positive result. Since the symptoms are often unclear, only an experienced doctor can diagnose accurately based on the signs. The examination gives a 100% result in Germany since modern methods and high-precision equipment are used.
The only way to diagnose stomach cancer accurately is to conduct a complete histological examination. To do this, you need a sample of tumor tissues, which is then given to the laboratory. However, there are other ways to detect oncology:
- Blood tests for revealing oncomarkers.
- Radiography with contrast. A picture allows the doctor to detect the tumor, its size, and the presence of metastases.
- Gastroscopy. It is carried out with the help of special equipment, which at the present stage can take samples of various tissues and shoot in high resolution.
- Laparoscopy. That is an operation in which instruments and a video camera are inserted through small holes in the abdomen to examine the tumor visually.
- CT (computed tomography) with contrast to determine the tumor's location and the degree of its penetration into neighboring organs and tissues.
- Ultrasound to monitor the dynamics of changes in the diameter and location of the neoplasm to detect possible metastases.
- Stool analysis – performed for traces of blood in the patient's stool.
Prophylactic of stomach cancer
To prevent the disease, you need to lead a healthy lifestyle and treat all diseases that can provoke cancer in time. If possible, the abuse of medicines and cosmetics that irritate the mucous membrane should be excluded.
However, diseases are not always preventable. Therefore, if stomach cancer is detected, you should immediately begin therapy. The success of stomach cancer treatment will depend on its stage and aggressiveness. Therefore, the earlier the patient starts therapy, the more effective it will be.
Treatment for stomach cancer
There are some treatment options for stomach cancer. The doctors will choose the most appropriate one or the combination:
This therapy uses anti-cancer drugs delivered to the bloodstream. The chemo can be combined with other methods (such as radiotherapy) or before the surgery. Usually, stomach cancer treatment takes several courses. It is conducted in cycles of 2-3 weeks with rest periods, giving the body time to recover.
Surgery is usually done to remove all cancerous tissue, affected organs, and lymph nodes. Specialists always do their best to preserve the organ as much as possible. However, sometimes oncologists have to cut out most of the stomach (subtotal resection) or even the entire organ (total resection). Endoscopic intervention in complex stomach cancer treatment can be performed if the tumor is detected early. It is a minimally invasive procedure that doesn't require cutting. But if the stomach cancer is incurable, doctors usually use palliative surgery to relieve symptoms and control the disease.
This kind of stomach cancer treatment uses radiation to destroy malignant cells. The therapy reduces the formation due to the effects of radiation. The procedure, including in the late stages, helps alleviate the disease's symptoms. It is carried out separately or in combination with other types of treatment.
A more modern approach to stomach cancer treatment stops the development of altered cells by affecting the substances necessary for their growth. Unlike chemotherapy, such drugs have clear targets – molecules present only in oncological tumors. So, they affect healthy tissues and the body as a whole less.
This option for stomach cancer treatment uses drugs that help the body's immune system recognize and destroy cancer cells. It is prescribed as a dropper every 2-3 weeks.
Germany is one of the best places for stomach cancer treatment. The rich experience of doctors and high-tech equipment of German clinics allow treating various forms of the disease. However, early treatment may be limited to chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and minimal surgical intervention.
Alternative treatments for gastric cancer in Germany
Oncology therapy is well-developed in Germany. Their doctors are the most experienced in their field. Moreover, therapy options are constantly developing in Germany. Oncologists and scientists are making breakthroughs in opening new opportunities for stomach cancer medication:
- Proton therapy - the proton beam has practically no effect on healthy cells. Radiation exposure destroys cancer cells;
- Transarterial chemoperfusion (TACP) - chemical drugs injected into the artery that feeds malignant neoplasms in the stomach;
- Transarterial chemoembolization(TACE) - blocking the blood vessel, which provides the malignant cells and injecting a drug that kills them.
Oncologists are also actively introducing innovative stomach cancer treatment, such as anti-cancer vaccines with dendritic cells, hyperthermia, ozone, and magnetic therapy.
Who offers alternative therapy for stomach cancer?
The best clinics
The oncological clinics in Germany are the leading medical institutions for stomach cancer treatment. The therapy is available for each patient, and medical care is provided at the top level. Moreover, German hospitals are equipped according to the latest standards. They have state-of-art devices for diagnosing and treating stomach cancer.
We offer you a list of the best German clinics for therapy:
The world-known center of high-performance medicine. It is based not only on the stomach cancer treatment of patients but also on medical research. Specializing in oncology and hematology, leukemias, lymphomas, and solid tumors. Here are available the latest medical methods for cancer diagnosis. Almost 75.000 operations are performed every year.
The hospital is one of the best in radiation oncology. There and successfully cures many patients annually. In addition, the oncological department of the hospital is certified by the German Cancer Society (DKG) for excellence in medical care. Furthermore, the clinic is known for new options in stomach cancer treatment, such as HIPEC (intraoperative chemotherapy) and PIPAC (minimally invasive administration of aerosolized chemotherapy within the abdominal cavity).
The hospital has a high-experienced medical team at its disposal. The specialists of the oncological department are focused on precise diagnosis and stomach cancer treatment. Moreover, the oncological branch is equipped with high-resolution videoscopes, making stomach cancer diagnostic and therapeutic procedures more effective.
It is one of the best clinics not only in Germany but also in Europe. Specialists have been trained in leading clinics in Europe and the USA. They are proficient in innovative methods of robotic surgery. That allows for successfully operating on patients with cancer at different stages. The hospital specialists are mainly focused on innovative stomach cancer treatment. Modern techniques such as intraoperative radiotherapy and abdominal chemotherapy are actively used in the clinic. The clinic is certified by the German Cancer Society (DKG) for high-quality stomach cancer treatment.
The medical institution is focused on high-quality medical care, especially for oncological patients. The focal points of the hospital include innovative techniques in stomach cancer treatment: intensity-modulated radiation therapy, image-guided radiation therapy, stereotactic irradiation, etc. The clinic successfully performs the most complex operations with the help of a CyberKnife. The method is a narrowly directed beam of electrons that affect the tumor without touching healthy tissues. The hospital is also a leading center for metastatic stomach cancer treatment. Oncologists cooperate with interventional radiologists to provide local and targeted chemotherapy: transarterial chemoembolization and transarterial perfusion for challenging cases.
Where to check for gastric oncology treatment?
It is not worth wasting time because sometimes the oncological process develops rapidly. When applying to foreign hospitals, you will not have to wait long in a queue for procedures. Diagnosis takes only a few days, and immediately after it, doctors begin treatment.
AiroMedical Company will be glad to become your guide and inform you about the possibilities of international clinics. The patient will receive the highest quality stomach cancer treatment with the highest chances of recovery. We will help you in the fight for health. Free yourself from worries!
- National Library of Medicine: Epidemiology of gastric cancer
- American Cancer Society: Key Statistics About Stomach Cancer
- Cancer.Net: Stomach Cancer: Statistics
- AACR Journals: Gastric Cancer: Descriptive Epidemiology, Risk Factors, Screening, and Prevention