Your treatment options for stomach cancer depend on the stage of your cancer, your overall health and your preferences. Treatments for stomach cancer include:
Surgery may be necessary to remove cancerous tissue, as well as nearby non-cancerous tissue. The most common operation is called gastrectomy. If part of the stomach is removed, it is called a subtotal or partial gastrectomy. If the entire stomach is removed, it is called a total gastrectomy.
Radiation therapy uses high-powered beams of energy, such as X-rays, to kill cancer cells. The energy beams come from a machine that moves around you as you lie on a table. Radiation therapy can be used before surgery (neoadjuvant radiation) to shrink a stomach tumor so it’s more easily removed. Radiation therapy can also be used after surgery (adjuvant radiation) to kill any cancer cells that might remain around your stomach.
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. It’s not much different with radiation therapy, chemotherapy can be given before or after surgery. Chemotherapy may be the only treatment used in people with rare forms of stomach cancer, such as gastric lymphoma and gastrointestinal stromal tumors. Really consider studying this post on Chemo side effects before you make any rash decisions on treatment.
If your cancer left untreated, it may lead you to these following stomach cancer complication:
- Fluid buildup in the belly area (ascites)
- Gastrointestinal bleeding
- Spread of cancer to other organs or tissues
- Weight loss
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