Medical experts hold that 80% of stomach cancer can be prevented early. Stomach cancer is not so terrible, and the five-year survival rate for stomach cancer can reach 90% if it is detected early. However, stomach cancer causes no obvious symptoms at the early stage, making it difficult to be detected and treated. There are six major symptoms and signs of stomach cancer.
Upper abdominal pain
Like dyspepsia, stomach cancer in the early stage causes mild and irregular abdominal pain that cannot be relieved by eating food. As the disease progresses, abdominal pain increases and keeps coming back. If the tumor is located at the gastric antrum, abdominal pain is usually regular and would take away after food intake.
Loss of appetite
Nearly 30% of patients with gastric cancer reported themselves suffering a loss of appetite before being detected with stomach cancer. They often feel full in the upper abdomen after eating a small meal and have no appetite for their favorite foods. This condition can worsen and develop to anorexia.
Stomach cancer may cause a weight decrease. This is because nutrients that support the normal functions of human bodies have been taken away by cancer cells.
If a person with gastropathy has an unexplained weight loss, a physical examination is needed to see whether it is caused by stomach cancer.
In some patients with early-stage stomach cancer, a fixed lump can be felt in the upper abdomen. The lump is usually hard and rough, and when pressed, there will be a pain.
Nausea and vomiting
Nausea and vomiting are symptoms of stomach cancer. Gastrointestinal diseases can also have the symptoms, but they are more obvious and severe in patients with gastric cancer. If the tumor grows in the pyloric area, nausea will occur frequently. And if the tumor grows in the stomach outlet, vomiting will occur, and food and gastric juice will vomit out.
Hematemesis and black stools
Fecal occult blood will occur as the tumor enlarge to destroy small blood vessels in the stomach. If the tumor destroys larger blood vessels, it would cause blood vomiting and black, tarry stools.
These symptoms might be caused by things other than cancer. If these symptoms don’t go away and get severe, people should go to the doctor and have a checkup.