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Stomach cancer - Surgery

Surgery is the most common treatment for stomach cancer. The operation is called gastrectomy.

health and fitness Updated: Jan 12, 2004 23:00 IST
PTI

Surgery is the most common treatment for stomach cancer. The operation is called gastrectomy. Gastrectomy is a major surgery. The surgeon removes part (subtotal or partial gastrectomy) or all (total gastrectomy) of the stomach, as well as some of the tissues around the stomach.

Cancer can spread through the lymphatic system, lymph nodes near the tumour are often removed during surgery so that the pathologist can check them for cancer cells. If cancer cells are in the lymph nodes, the disease may have spread to other parts of the body.

Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is the use of drugs to kill cancer cells. Chemotherapy is given in cycles.

The side effects of chemotherapy depend mainly on the drugs the patient receives. As with any other type of treatment, side effects also vary from person to person. In general, anticancer drugs affect cells that divide rapidly. These include blood cells, which fight infection, help the blood to clot, or carry oxygen to all parts of the body.

When blood cells are affected by anticancer drugs, patients are more likely to get infections, may bruise or bleed easily, and may have less energy. Cells in hair roots and cells that line the digestive tract also divide rapidly. As a result of chemotherapy, patients may have side effects such as loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, hair loss, or mouth sores. For some patients, the doctor may prescribe medicines to help with side effects, especially with nausea and vomiting.

Most anticancer drugs are given by injection; some are taken by mouth. The doctor may use one drug or a combination of drugs.

(Source: Webhealthcentre.com)