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Stomach Cancer

How Is Stomach Cancer Treated?

Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - 16:14

Contributing Author: Guy Slowik FRCS

There are a variety of effective treatment options for stomach cancer. In general, treatment depends on:

  • The size, location, and extent of the tumor.
  • The stage of the disease when the cancer is found.
  • The person's general health and other factors.

Because of these variables, treatment is individually designed for each person.

Treatment decisions are complex. So, it can be helpful to seek a second, or even a third opinion about the diagnosis and the treatment plan. Your doctor will not be insulted by this request, but will likely encourage it.

Depending on the stage of the disease when found, treatment for stomach cancer may include:

  • Surgery
  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiation therapy
  • Biological therapy (also called immunotherapy)

Need To Know:

The Importance of Nutrition

It can be very difficult for those who have been treated for stomach cancer to eat, let alone meet the increased nutritional needs the condition triggers.

The cancer itself and the treatment can contribute to appetite loss. Few people feel like eating when uncomfortable, sick, or tired. It is often very difficult to eat when combating side effects of nausea, vomiting, or mouth sores.

Treatment can dull taste sensations, so food may taste different during therapy. Those who have had stomach surgery may find that eating just a small amount can lead to an uncomfortable sensation of fullness.

Good nutrition is essential for everyone, but especially for someone with stomach cancer. Eating well means getting enough calories and the right kinds of nutrients to prevent weight loss, regain strength, and rebuild tissues. Food can be modified to make it easier to eat, and richer in nutrients.

Consultation with a nutritionist can often make a big difference. A nutritionist can design a specialized eating program that is designed for both the person and the condition, providing the right nutrition to aid the healing process.

Stomach Cancer