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Gastric (stomach) cancer

Gastric cancer is a cancer that grows in the lining of the stomach. Patients with a history of smoking, alcohol use, heavy nitrate foods, exposure to toxins and a family history of gastric cancer are at increased risk for developing gastric cancer.

Early gastric cancer often does not cause pain or symptoms, although mild abdominal (stomach) pain, nausea or heartburn may be present. Other signs and symptoms include decreased appetite, weight loss and quickly feeling full after eating. Later, there may be bleeding in the stomach that can lead to blood in the stool (bowel movements), vomiting of blood or anemia (due to not enough iron in the blood).

Treatment options

Treatment of gastric cancer is based upon several factors, including the location in the stomach, size and spread. Once these factors are determined, your doctor may recommend chemotherapy, radiation therapy and/or surgery to help fight this disease.

Chemotherapy involves giving medications that can help decrease the size of the cancer, as well as prevent the cancer from spreading to other areas of the body. Legacy doctors offer proven treatment regimens. We are also involved in national clinical trials.

Surgery often requires partial or complete removal of the stomach. Legacy offers minimally invasive techniques that can help speed recovery.

Radiation therapy involves giving radiation doses to shrink the cancer. This treatment can help reduce pain and other symptoms. It can also help reduce and control the spread of the cancer in that area. 

A team of experts

Since the treatment of gastric cancer requires input from many different specialists, we have gathered together physicians across specialties who are committed to treatment of this disease. We routinely discuss and develop treatment plans in a patient care conference; this allows us to discuss individual patients with experts in their field to generate a unique treatment plan for each patient.

Legacy has particular expertise in treating cancer, including gastrointestinal cancers -- colorectal, liver, gallbladder, bile duct, pancreatic, gastric and esophageal cancers. We offer up-to-date and proven treatment options, including minimally invasive choices, as well as services to support your quality of life during treatment and after.

In addition, the specialists at Legacy Medical Group-Gastroenterology in Gresham, at Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center, can diagnose cancers in the gastrointestinal tract. We also coordinate with other gastrointestinal clinics and doctors.

Find a gastroenterologist.

You're not alone

At Legacy Cancer Institute we offer services to support every aspect of your treatment, including your physical, emotional, social and spiritual well-being. We offer a range of support services to help you and your family. If you need help just ask us, and we'll help you find the support you need.

Our personalized support services begin with our nurse navigators. They will help you throughout your treatment, from knowing what to expect to finding the right support services and helping you manage symptoms and treatment side effects. Contact a nurse navigator

Support services

In addition, the following support services are also available:

Among the nation's best 

Legacy Cancer Institute is ranked among the nation's best by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer. Legacy has received multiple quality awards, and is the only system in Oregon to be awarded the Outstanding Achievement Award from the American College of Surgeons' Commission (ACS) on Cancer.