Why is stomach cancer so dangerous?

Cancer is a dreaded disease. Stomach cancer is even more menacing for specific reasons. This makes it imperative that we understand why it is so dangerous.

The stomach is the organ that stores our food and helps in its further digestion in the intestine. Since it is a highly expandable structure to accommodate food, even if the cancer is vast, symptoms are usually experienced by the patient only when the disease is very advanced.

Furthermore, the symptoms of stomach cancer can be very vague and sometimes misleading. The feeling of acidity and abdominal pain is prevalent and taken lightly until the disease has progressed substantially. Sometimes, the symptom may be anemia (low hemoglobin). An upper GI endoscopy is usually required to confirm the diagnosis. Weight loss and decreased appetite are also common symptoms that are traditionally ignored.


Another reason for concern is that stomach cancers usually have an aggressive tumor biology, which means that they are inherently fast-growing and spread to other parts of the body quickly. This doesn’t give much time to spare to initiate treatment. Also, lousy biology means the chances of the tumor recurring after treatment are high. 

The treatment options are also somewhat complicated, such as chemotherapy, supra-major surgery, radiation therapy, and sometimes targeted therapy.

The important thing is to be aware of the symptoms early on and to get appropriate tests to rule out or confirm this disease. Check-ups should also be done if there is someone else in the family with cancer. Smoking and alcohol intake should be avoided. Smoked food is also harmful. 

In conclusion, prevention is better than cure, more so in stomach cancer. Awareness and early detection is the key to beat this dangerous cancer.