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Stomach Cancer Symptoms and Types

Our Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center staff is led by world-renowned experts on stomach cancer. We can diagnose your type of stomach cancer and provide you with the information you need to stay healthy and provide treatment and support when you need it.

What Are the Symptoms of Stomach Cancer?

Stomach cancer is difficult to detect early. In early stages, the chances of experiencing symptoms are relatively low. Remember that most symptoms of stomach cancer do not appear until the disease is advanced. The symptoms of stomach cancer include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Vague discomfort in the abdomen, typically above the navel
  • Poor appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Fullness after eating small amounts of food
  • Nausea
  • Heartburn or indigestion
  • Swelling or fluid build-up in the abdomen
  • Anemia
  • Blood in stool
  • Vomiting, sometimes with blood

These symptoms may be associated with other health conditions, such as ulcers or a stomach virus and do not always mean that you have stomach cancer.  If you have any of these symptoms and find that they worsen and don’t go away over time, schedule an appointment with your doctor right away.

Types of Stomach Cancer

There are different types of stomach cancer, some rarer than others, including:

  • Adenocarcinoma: This is the most common type of stomach cancer. Adenocarcinoma originates in the tissue that line the body’s organs (glandular tissue). This type of cancer specifically originates in the mucus-producing cells that form the innermost layer of the stomach.
  • Gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST): GIST is a rare form of stomach cancer. These tumors can be benign or cancerous and form cells in the smooth muscle tissue of the stomach wall.
  • Carcinoid Tumors: These rare tumors are slow-growing and originate in the cells of the endocrine and nervous systems.
  • Gastric lymphomas: These cancers of the immune system form in the stomach tissue.

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