There are different types of stomach cancer and the frequency of these cancer subtypes are as follows.
Talk to our oncologists at Onco Life Centre about your treatment options. Treatment recommendations by our oncologists at Onco Life Centre are tailored and personalized and depends on stage of stomach cancer, genetic changes in the tumor, and the patient’s preferences and overall health. The landscape of drug treatment in stomach cancer has evolved over the last 5 years.
Surgery is often part of the treatment for stomach cancer if it can be done. Depending on the type and stage of your cancer, surgery might be used to remove the cancer and part or all of your stomach. Surgery (often along with other treatments) offers the only real chance to cure stomach cancer. Even if the cancer is too widespread to be completely removed, an operation could help prevent bleeding from the tumor or keep the stomach from being blocked. This type of surgery is known as palliative surgery.
The 3 main types of surgery for stomach cancer.
In this operation, the cancer is removed through an endoscope and can be done only for some very early cancers where the chance of spread is very low.
Chemotherapy can be given before surgery to shrink the tumor and make it easier to completely remove it. Chemo may also be given, often along with radiation, after surgery to kill any groups of cancer cells that may have been left behind but are too small to be seen. The goal is to keep the cancer from coming back.
Chemo may also be used as the main treatment for stomach cancer that has spread to distant organs, to relieve cancer related symptons as well as to prolong patient survival.
Targeted therapy targets the cancer’s specific genes, proteins, or the tissue environment that contributes to cancer growth and survival. This type of treatment blocks the growth and spread of cancer cells while limiting damage to healthy cells. To find the most effective treatment, our oncologist will run tests to identify the genes, proteins, and other factors in your tumor.
Some cancers may make too much of a protein called human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2). If your stomach cancer cells overexpress HER2 protein, HER2-targeted therapy with chemo can prolong the lives of patients with advanced stomach cancer.
Immunotherapy is designed to boost your body's natural defenses to fight the cancer. The PD-1 pathway is critical in the immune system’s ability to control cancer growth. PD-1 and PD-L1 antibodies block this pathway and can stop the growth of stomach cancer. For patients with advanced stomach cancer that has PD-L1 or is MSI-H disease, immunotherapy may be an option for patients when chemotherapy does not work.
Before surgery, radiation can be used along with chemo to try to shrink some tumors to make surgery easier. After surgery, radiation can be used to kill very small areas of cancer that cannot be seen and removed during surgery. Radiation, especially when combined with chemotherapy (chemo), might delay or prevent the cancer from coming back after surgery and may help people to live longer. Radiation can also be used to slow the growth and ease symptoms of advanced stomach cancer such as pain, bleeding, and trouble eating.
Patients and their families have opportunities to talk about the way they are feeling with our oncologists, nurses, counselors, or join our psychosocial program and support group at Onco Life Centre.