Stomach cancer is a malignant tumor that originates from the epithelium of the gastric mucosa. It not only causes damage to the digestive system, but also may metastasize and affect liver, kidney and respiratory functions, and in serious cases, it can be life-threatening.
Symptoms of Stomach Cancer
In the middle and late stages, upper abdominal pain, gastrointestinal bleeding, perforation, pyloric obstruction, emaciation, weakness, metabolic disorders and corresponding symptoms caused by cancer spreading and metastasis may occur at any age, mostly between 50 and 60 years old.
1.Geographical environment & diet
There are obvious geographical differences in the incidence of gastric cancer, which mainly occurs in Southeast Asia. People who consume smoked and salted foods for a long time in this region have a higher incidence rate, which is related to the high content of carcinogens or former carcinogens such as nitrite, fungal toxins and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon compounds in foods.
Smokers have a 50% higher risk of stomach cancer than nonsmokers.
2. Helicobacter pylori (Hp) infection
Hp infection can cause chronic inflammation of gastric mucosa plus environmental pathogenic factors to accelerate the overproliferation of mucosal epithelial cells, leading to aberrations and carcinogenesis. The toxicity products of H. pylori (CagA, VacA) may have cancer-promoting effects, and the detection rate of anti-CagA antibodies in gastric cancer patients is significantly higher than that of the general population.
3. Pre-cancerous lesions
This includes precancerous diseases and precancerous lesions. The former refers to benign gastric diseases associated with gastric cancer and at risk of gastric cancer, mainly chronic atrophic gastritis, gastric polyps, gastric ulcer and residual gastritis. The latter refers to pathological changes that are more likely to transform into cancerous tissue, mainly intestinal epithelial metaplasia and atypical hyperplasia.
4. Heredity and genes
The incidence of gastric cancer has an obvious tendency to gather in families, and the incidence rate is two to three times that of the normal population. The carcinogenesis of gastric cancer is a multifactorial, multi-step and multi-stage development process, involving changes of oncogenes, oncogenes, apoptosis-related genes and metastasis-related genes, etc., and the forms of genetic changes are also various.
What are the symptoms of early-stage stomach cancer?
(I) Significant weight loss
Patients with the chronic gastric disease are generally thin in body shape. If they appear to be thin, fatigued, have general weakness and have anemia within a short period of time, they should be alert to the possibility of gastric cancer. In the process of growth, gastric cancer cells continuously consume nutrients in the body, resulting in the inability of normal tissues to obtain nutrition, which leads to nutritional deficiency and weight loss, and is accompanied by nausea, vomiting or upper gastrointestinal symptoms similar to ulcer disease.
(2) Loss of appetite
One-third of gastric cancer patients describe unexplained anorexia and abnormal appetite in the early stage of gastric cancer, which are manifested as loss of appetite or loss of appetite, feeling of fullness after eating, belching and lack of interest even in the face of favorite food, and later will show symptoms of anorexia, especially meat.
(3) Abdominal pain and discomfort
Most patients with gastric cancer often feel discomfort in upper abdomen, manifesting as abnormal fullness and belching and burping after eating, which is mild at first, vague and painful without regularity, and cannot be relieved by eating, and is often mistaken as indigestion. When the nature and regularity of pain change and does not improve with conventional treatment, the relevant examination should be performed as soon as possible.
(4) Gastrointestinal bleeding
Vomiting blood and black stools are commonly associated with gastric ulcer or gastric cancer because as the tumor grows, it may destroy the blood tubules in the stomach and cause these symptoms.
(5) Abnormal lumps in the abdomen
Some patients with early-stage of gastric cancer find a lump in their upper abdomen and can feel a fixed lump, which is usually hard and painful when pressed, they should be highly alert!
How to prevent stomach cancer?
- Eat regularly and quantitatively, do not overeat, and do not eat food that is too hot.
- Eat more foods containing vitamin A, B, E, and beta carotene, and do not just pursue high protein.
- Increase the high fiber diet.
- Eat less pickled foods, such as fish sauce, sauerkraut, kimchi, etc.. Because these foods contain a large number of nitrites and secondary amines, in the stomach under the action of suitable acidity or bacteria, can be synthesized nitrosamines, which are strong carcinogens. Deep-fried, baked and burnt foods also contain such carcinogenic substances.
- Patients suffering from atrophic gastritis, gastric ulcer, gastric polyadenomatous polyp and pernicious anemia need regular checkups and treatment to eliminate precancerous lesions and prevent the occurrence of gastric cancer.