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Unexplained Weight Loss to Fatigue: 5 common symptoms of stomach cancer

The prognosis for stomach cancer depends on various factors such as the stage of the cancer and the individual's overall health. Early detection and prompt treatment can improve the chances of survival and reduce the risk of complications.

Kristina Das Edited By: Kristina Das @ New Delhi Published on: December 11, 2023 17:37 IST
stomach cancer
Image Source : FREEPIK 5 common symptoms of stomach cancer.

Stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer, is a type of cancer that affects the cells lining the stomach. It is the fifth most common type of cancer worldwide and is more prevalent in men than women. The exact cause of stomach cancer is still unknown, but several factors can increase the risk of developing the disease, such as a family history of stomach cancer, smoking, and a diet high in salt and processed foods. Stomach cancer is also a less frequently discussed but significant health concern, and poses a substantial risk when symptoms go unnoticed or are misinterpreted. This urgency stems from the often subtle nature of these signs, potentially leading to delayed diagnoses and more challenging treatments.

Dr Sukhvinder Singh Saggu, Director of Minimal Access, GI & Bariatric Surgery at the CK Birla Hospital (R), Delhi delves into the importance of recognizing and addressing five common symptoms that could be indicative of stomach cancer:

Persistent Abdominal Discomfort – A warning sign

The first and foremost symptom to be aware of is persistent abdominal discomfort or pain. Frequently mistaken for indigestion or minor digestive issues, enduring pain in the upper abdomen could be an early indication of stomach cancer. Seeking medical advice becomes crucial when this discomfort persists despite over-the-counter medications or lifestyle changes.

Unexplained Weight Loss – Not always positive

Unintentional weight loss, without changes in diet or exercise, is another red flag for stomach cancer. While shedding pounds might not initially raise concerns, when coupled with symptoms like abdominal pain, it could signify an underlying health issue that requires prompt attention.

Persistent Nausea and Vomiting: A symptom requires investigating

Persistent nausea and vomiting, particularly after meals, should not be dismissed lightly. While occasional nausea can have various causes, persistent bouts, especially after eating, could indicate gastric concerns requiring medical assessment.

Difficulty Swallowing (Dysphagia): Immediate attention required

Difficulty swallowing, known as dysphagia, is a symptom demanding immediate attention. Starting with challenges in swallowing solid foods and progressing to liquids as cancer advances, individuals experiencing this symptom should promptly consult healthcare professionals for a thorough evaluation.

Unexplained Fatigue and Weakness: An indication of underlying issues

Unexplained fatigue and weakness, persisting despite adequate rest, could be indicative of an underlying health issue, including stomach cancer. Often overlooked or attributed to daily stressors, persistent fatigue, especially when combined with other symptoms, necessitates a thorough medical evaluation.

"It is important to remember that although stomach cancer could be the cause of these symptoms, other benign illnesses could also be the cause. For a proper evaluation and diagnosis, anyone exhibiting these warning signs should seek medical assistance as soon as possible, since early detection considerably improves treatment outcomes. Furthermore, raising awareness is essential to combating stomach cancer. Acquiring knowledge about these indications and promoting prompt medical attention can significantly impact early identification and favourable treatment results. Frequent check-ups and honest contact with medical professionals can help with early intervention, which may even save lives." says Dr Sukhvinder Singh Saggu.

"It's critical to recognize and act upon the subtle indicators of stomach cancer. People can take proactive measures toward their health and well-being by swiftly addressing these symptoms and getting medical guidance. This could result in an earlier diagnosis and more successful treatment options."

(With IANS Inputs)

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