Stomach Cancer

Northside Hospital Cancer Institute is more than Georgia’s largest and most comprehensive community cancer program. We’re experts who care about the people and the communities we serve. You can rely on our experienced care team for the knowledge, strength and dedication you deserve in the fight against stomach cancer, also called gastric cancer.

Your Team of Stomach Cancer Treatment Specialists 

Northside Hospital Cancer Institute never underestimates the power of teamwork when it comes to cancer diagnosis and treatment. That’s why our gastric cancer treatment team includes an extensive number of specialists with an unwavering focus on getting you well.

The right team to meet your needs may include gastroenterologists, colorectal surgeons, surgical oncologists, medical and radiation oncologists, along with pathologists and radiologists. Your care team may also include:

  • Nurse navigators who can help you through the treatment process.
  • Dietitians for health and nutrition expertise.
  • Rehabilitation specialists to help you maintain strength and energy for daily activities.
  • Research nurses (when applicable) to help you better understand your cancer.
  • Social workers you can lean on for social, emotional and spiritual support.


Stomach Cancer Support & Survivorship 

Stomach or gastric cancer, is more common in less developed countries. Over the last decade, the number of new cases in the United States has steadily declined.

Any cancer diagnosis is difficult, but our oncology nurse navigators are here to help guide you through treatment and into survivorship. They can explain your care plan, answer your questions, help to coordinate care and connect you with our comprehensive support and survivorship resources.

More About Stomach Cancer

Stomach cancer often grows slowly over a period of years. However, different types of stomach cancer can develop in various parts of the stomach or layers of the stomach wall. 

Adenocarcinomas represent more than 90% of all gastric cancer. Adenocarcinomas form in the inside lining of the stomach, which is called the “mucosa,” which is important because the type and location of stomach cancer impacts how it’s treated.

Stomach Cancer Symptoms 

Stomach cancer is hard to catch early. Most people have few symptoms at first. Often, it’s only found after it has spread to other areas of the body. 

Although these symptoms can come from issues other than cancer, be sure to see your doctor if they don’t go away:  

  • Loss of appetite
  • Unintended weight loss
  • Feeling of a full stomach after a small meal
  • Abdominal pain or discomfort
  • Indigestion or heartburn 
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Blood in your bowel movements
  • Anemia (too few red blood cells)

Stomach Cancer Risk Factors 

Men are more likely to develop gastric cancer than women. In the United States, it affects more Hispanic Americans, African Americans, Native Americans and Asian/Pacific Islanders at a higher rate. 

People may also be at more risk if they:

  • Eat large amounts of salted meats, smoked foods and pickled vegetables
  • Are over age 50
  • Are infected with Helicobacter pylori (H pylori) bacteria
  • Have type A blood
  • Have certain medical conditions, such as hereditary diffuse gastric cancer

There are no known ways to prevent stomach cancer. Still, scientists believe you can lower your risk if you:

  • Eat a diet high in fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Avoid eating salted meats and smoked or pickled foods
  • Get physical exercise 
  • Stay at a healthy weight
  • Avoid smoking and other tobacco use

Stomach Cancer Diagnosis at Northside Hospital Cancer Institute

To diagnose stomach cancer, one of Northside’s fellowship-trained colorectal surgeons or surgical oncologists will first talk with you and perform a physical exam. After that, they may perform one or more of these tests:

Stomach Cancer Treatment Options Based on Your Personal Goals 

At Northside Hospital Cancer Institute, stomach cancer treatment may involve surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, targeted therapy or immunotherapy. Your doctor may use just one of these treatments or several of them together, depending on the exact type and extent of your cancer. 

On the leading edge of cancer research, our Research Program is one of the largest community-based oncology/hematology programs in the nation. Taking part in a cancer clinical trial at Northside Hospital Cancer Institute not only gives you access to best-in-class care from cancer experts, it also helps scientists better understand — and better fight — cancer.  

While any of these treatment options may be a part of your stomach cancer treatment, your care team at Northside Hospital Cancer Institute will take the time to design a cancer treatment plan tailored to your personal needs and goals.