Earlier this century cancer of the stomach was one of the most common cancers in western countries . but the number of such cancers has gradually decreased over the past 50 years . This decrease is attributed to refrigeration becoming more easily available allowing foods to be preserved fresh in a refrigerator rather than being smoked , salted , pickled or cured . These methods of preserving and treating food are believed to be some of the cause of stomach cancer such as Japan and China , regarded as largely due to the dietary habits in these countries as well as to a high cigarette smoking rate . Globally about 800000 individuals are expected to develop stomach cancer in 2003 and of these there will be only about 23000 in the USA about 12000 in UK some 1800 in Australia but some 85000 in Japan and over 260000 in China
THE OUTLOOK FOR STOMACH CANCER
If the cancer can be identified at a time when it only involves the superficial lining layer of the stomach and only involves a few cells and such a stomach cancer is surgically removed 90 % of these individuals are likely to have a normal life span . However if the stomach cancer has involved all the layers of the stomach this chance decreases to 50% and if it has spread outside the stomach or to distant organs of the body the chances of surviving in the long term are extremely gloomy .
PRE CANCEROUS CONDITIONS IN STOMACH CANCER
1.Benign stomach (gastric ) ulcer , in most instances these benign ulcers in the stomach do not become malignant although in a few cancerous change can supervene after many years . Helicobacter pylori infection of the stomach appears to be an important cause of gastric ulcers .
2.Chronic duodenal ulcer , this is a common condition of the duodenum , the organ situated next to the stomach . we can reassure those with this condition that even after many years of having a chronic duodenal ulcer , the chances of it becoming malignant are almost nil.
3.Gastritis with low or absent stomach acid production . This situation can occur in an uncommon illness. Pernicious anemia and it can also occur without any obvious reason . Here absent or low levels of stomach acid which is normally produced to
aid digestion is associated with the disappearance of gastric glands and this is called atrophic gastritis . Atrophic gastritis is a pre malignant condition .
CAUSES OF STOMACH CANCER
Inherited causes :family history of stomach cancer ,such a history in a near relative doubles a person’s chances of developing stomach cancer during their life time
Type A blood group ,the common blood groups are A,B,O ,and AB. A person with type A blood has a 20% increased chance of developing stomach cancer during their life time compared to those with other blood groups
Personal health risks: presence of Helicobacter pylori in the stomach .this is an organism which in recent has been associated not only with stomach cancer but also with gastric and duodenal ulcers and with inflammatory changes called gastritis . why Helicobacter infection is present in some individuals but not in others is at present in some individuals but not in others is at present is uncertain , although it may be linked to both undesirable Helicobacter infection probably cause no symptoms . Helicobacter Pylori infection can usually be eradicated by the use of suitable antibiotics . It has also been suggested recently by Australian scientists that the regular intake of acidophilus bacteria (found in some brands of yoghurt and in some bacteria supplements )can also eradicate Helicobacter infection. Previous surgical removal of part of the stomach (partial gastrectomy ) for a non malignant condition , such as a gastric or duodenal ulcer . This become a stomach cancer risk some 15-40 years after the stomach has been removed . Pernicious anemia ,Individuals with this uncommon condition not only have anemia but also have no normal stomach acid production . They develop the condition previously described , atrophic gastritis . Individuals with atrophic gastritis have a 10 %chance of developing stomach cancer during their life time . Low or absent stomach acid production with atrophic gastritis , even in the absence of pernicious anemia , this is a risk for the future development of stomach cancer
Life style health risks : Dietary factors, a special risk for stomach cancer is a diet which is low in vegetables , fruit and cereals and particularly those fruits , vegetables and cereals which contain a lot of beta-carotene , vitamin-c and vitamin-e
A diet high in pickled . smoked , salted or cured food or foods preserved with nitrate , such as salami ,sausages , hot dogs , smoked meat , smoked fish or pickled food of any kind are also risks for stomach cancer . These dietary factors are probably important because the risk foods described above all seem to produce carcinogens called nitrosamines . Also vitamin-C acts as antioxidant and has other actions which neutralize the effects of nitrosamines . Dietary factors are probably the most important single cause of stomach cancer . Smoking , a recent Australian study which examined all the scientific evidence published over the years has found that smoking is likely to be an important contributory cause of stomach cancer .
PRIMARY PREVENTION OF STOMACH CANCER :
1.Dietary changes it is particularly important to have a high consumption of fruit ,vegetables and cereals which contain beta-carotene ,vitamin-c and vitamin-e and at the same time avoid or eat very little pickled ,smoked ,salted ,cured and nitrate –preserved foods .In a recently reported study from China ,where stomach cancer is still relatively common ,the daily use of vitamin-e ,beta carotene and selenium supplements decreased stomach cancer risk by one-fifth .
2.Avoid smoking ,hints and guidance about quitting smoking are described
3.Eradicate Helicobacter Pylori , if helicobacter infection has been shown to be present ,suitable antibiotics can be used recent research suggests that the acidophilus bacteria found in some dietary supplements may also been effective way to eliminate helicobacter infection
4.Aspirin based mainly on experimental data ,the regular use of aspirin as a preventive for stomach cancer has been advanced . However the human evidence of a preventive role for aspirin in stomach cancer is insufficient at present to make such a recommendation .
CANCERS THAT MAY BE STRESS RELATED
At present the evidence is suggestive ,but it is certainly not proven scientifically that stress full events may be a contributory cause of cancer .The strongest evidence that stressful life changes can trigger certain cancers is for cancer of the colon ,cancer of the rectum ,breast cancer and lung cancer . However it is very unlikely that this triggering effect of stress is only present for these cancers . the more likely explanation is that all cancers can be triggered by successful life changes and by the emotional change which is often associated with these stresses and that these four cancers and there fore have been more extensively studied by scientists than the less common malignant tumors .
HOW STRESS MIGHT TRIGGER CANCER
Scientists are still piercing the clues together and at present the explanations of how
Stress may be a triggering factor in the appearance of a cancer should be regarded as speculative . Extensive studies in certain well defined groups of individuals who are known to be under major stresses such as among those who have had a bereavement and who do not adjust and remain in grief for an abnormally long period of time have shown that their immunity often becomes depressed . so that they are more susceptible to various illnesses including cancer . this lowering of the immunity interferes with the normal capacity of the body to eliminate the occasional cancer cell which may be present in the body . This depression of the these cells and as a result a lump appears , say in the breast which is then diagnosed as breast cancer .
STRESS MANAGEMENT IN A CANCER PREVENTION PROGRAMME
At present scientists can not say with certainly that reducing one’s stress level will decrease the risk of developing a cancer , the evidence for this is mounting , suggesting that stress can be a trigger for the appearance of a cancer , but the evidence is not nearly as strong as say for diet smoking and inherited factors ,nevertheless , I present some methods which may be use full in reducing your stress level in the knowledge that if performed correctly ,they can do you no harm , your life is likely to become more vital and enjoyable and as a bonus , your chances of developing a cancer or other illnesses may also be reduced .
Phosphorus : It has also cured cancer of the stomach when in addition to the above symptoms , the patient vomits water as soon as it gets warm in the stomach .
Cadmium sulph : when the patient feels chilly even near the fire has nausea ,vomiting for cancer of throat , mouth or stomach .
Condurango : In cancer of oesophagus or stomach . There are many other medicines , only few have been mentioned here .