Stomach cancer: Eight early-stage symptoms – ‘important to see your doctor’

Stomach cancer: Surgeon explains the symptoms

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These symptoms include:
• Unexplained weight loss
• Abdominal pain or vague pain just above the belly button are
• Indigestion
• Heartburn
• Vomiting
• Weakness or fatigue
• Blood in your vomit or stool
• A feeling of fullness after small meals

Not all of these symptoms are the result of stomach cancer.

Some of them may be symptoms of other stomach related conditions.

Nevertheless, it is better to get checked and find it is a non-cancer related issue than to leave it.

If the cancer grows other symptoms can develop.

Advanced stomach cancer symptoms include, if it has spread to the large intestine:
• Loss of appetite
• Significant weight loss
• Uncontrolled vomiting

If it has spread to your liver, you might experience jaundice and ascites.

Jaundice is the yellowing of your skin or eyes, whilst ascites is the enlargement of the stomach from fluid.

As to the causes of stomach cancer, there are five risk factors that will affect your likelihood of developing the condition.

Examples include if you are over the age of 50 years old and if you are a man.

If you have Helicobacter pylori, a long-term infection, this will increase your risk.

Furthermore, if you suffer from long-term stomach conditions such as acid reflux, gastritis, or pernicious anaemia.

Whether one of your siblings or a parent has had stomach cancer will affect your risk too.

There are several actions you can take to reduce your risk of developing stomach cancer including quitting smoking, losing weight, cutting down on salt and alcohol.

If you work in a job where you’re exposed to harmful chemicals, try to wear protective clothing.

As always, if you have any concerns, consult your GP.

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