Types of Stomach Cancer – Treatment of Stomach Cancer in India

Types of Stomach Cancer

• Adenocarcinoma of the Stomach:

Adenocarcinoma is the most common type of stomach cancer. More than 95 out of every 100 stomach cancers (95%) diagnosed are adenocarcinomas. The cancer starts in the gland cells in the stomach lining. The gland cells produce mucus and stomach juices.

• Squamous Cell Cancers:

Squamous cells are the skin like cells that lie between gland cells to make the stomach lining. These cancers are treated in the same way as adenocarcinomas.

• Lymphoma of the Stomach:

Lymphoma is another type of cancer altogether. It is very rare. There is a whole section on non Hodgkin’s lymphoma, which will be more relevant to you if you have been diagnosed with lymphoma of the stomach.

• Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumour (GIST):

GISTs can be cancerous or non cancerous (benign). These rare tumours develop from the cells of the connective tissue that support the organs of the digestive (gastrointestinal) tract. Most are found in the stomach.

• Neuroendocrine Tumours:

Neuroendocrine tumours (NETs) can be cancerous or non cancerous. They grow in hormone producing tissues, usually in the digestive system. They are rare, but the most common is carcinoid tumour.

How are Stomach Cancers Diagnosed

• Physical Exam and History :An exam of the body to check general signs of health, including checking for signs of disease, such as lumps or anything else that seems unusual.A history of the patient’s health habits and past illnesses and treatments will also be taken.

• Blood Chemistry Studies :A procedure in which a blood sample is checked to measure the amounts of certain substances released into the blood by organs and tissues in the body.

• Upper Endoscopy :A procedure to look inside the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum (first part of the small intestine) to check for abnormal areas.

• Barium Swallow :A series of x-rays of the esophagus and stomach. The patient drinks a liquid that contains barium (a silver-white metallic compound). The liquid coats the esophagus and stomach and x-rays are taken. This procedure is also called an upper GI series.

• Biopsy :The removal of cells or tissues so they can be viewed under a microscope to check for signs of cancer. A biopsy of the stomach is usually done during the endoscopy.

• CT Scan (CAT Scan) :A procedure that makes a series of detailed pictures of areas inside the body, taken from different angles. The pictures are made by a computer linked to an x-ray machine.

Treatment of Stomach Cancer at World Class Hospitals in India

Surgery : The goal of surgery is to remove all of the stomach cancer and a margin of healthy tissue, when possible. Options include:

  • Removing a Portion of the Stomach (Subtotal Gastrectomy). During subtotal Gastrectomy, the surgeon removes only the portion of the stomach affected by cancer. Subtotal gastrectomy can be of two types.
    • Distal subtotal gastrectomy is performed if the tumor cells are present in the lower part of the stomach near to the stomach duodenum junction.
    • Proximal subtotal gastrectomy is done when the tumor is situated in the upper part of the stomach and also involves the esophagus.


  • Removing the Entire Stomach (Total Gastrectomy). Total Gastrectomy involves removing the entire stomach and some surrounding tissue. The esophagus is then connected directly to the small intestine to allow food to move through your digestive system.


  • Removing Lymph nodes to look for Cancer. The surgeon examines and removes lymph nodes in your abdomen to look for cancer cells.

Chemotherapy : Chemotherapy is a drug treatment that uses chemicals to kill cancer cells. Chemotherapy drugs travel throughout your body, killing cancer cells that may have spread beyond the stomach. Chemotherapy can be given before surgery (neoadjuvant chemotherapy) to help shrink a tumor so it can be more easily removed. Chemotherapy is also used after surgery (adjuvant chemotherapy) to kill any cancer cells that might remain in the body.

Radiation therapy : Radiation therapy may be used to kill the cancer cells. Radiation therapy can be administered using a machine outside the body (external radiation therapy) or using needles, seeds, wires, or catheters placed in the body in or near the cancer (internal radiation therapy). External radiation therapy uses a machine outside of the body to send radiation toward the cancer. Internal radiation therapy uses a radioactive substance sealed in needles, seeds, wires, or catheters that are placed directly into or near the cancer.

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