Stomach, Colon and Pancreatic Cancer

Stomach Cancer

The bowel is part of the digestive system that extends from the stomach to the anus. It is a hollow tube wrapped around his abdomen, divided into two parts: the small intestine and the large intestine (colon and rectum). Stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer is cancer that begins in any part of the stomach.

The stomach is just one of many organs in the abdomen, the area of ​​the body between the chest and pelvis. Other organs in the abdomen are liver, pancreas, gall bladder and colon. It is important to differentiate between these organs, because cancers and other diseases that affect them present different symptoms and are treated differently.


Surgery may be required to remove the cancerous tissue and adjacent noncancerous tissue. The most common operation is called gastrectomy. If part of the stomach is removed, is called partial or subtotal gastrectomy. If the stomach is completely removed, it is called a total gastrectomy. Nearby lymph nodes are usually removed.

Cancer of the large intestine is called colorectal cancer.

The following are the most common symptoms of stomach cancer. However, each individual may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:

  • Indigestion or heartburn (burning sensation)
  • Discomfort or pain in the abdomen
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Bloating after meals
  • Loss of appetite
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Vomiting blood or blood in the stool

The symptoms of stomach cancer may resemble other conditions or medical problems. Always consult your physician for a diagnosis

Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is malignant cells are found in the colon or rectum. The colon and rectum are parts of the large intestine, which is part of the digestive system. Because colon cancer and rectal cancer have many features in common, sometimes referred to together as colorectal cancer. Cancerous tumors in the colon or rectum also may spread to other body parts.

Excluding skin cancer, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in both men and women. The American Cancer Society estimates that about 140,000 cases of colorectal cancer and about 50,000 deaths from colorectal cancer occur each year. The number of deaths from colorectal cancer has decreased, which is attributed to the greater selection and removal of polyps and improvements in cancer treatment.

Each year there are over thousands of cases of colorectal cancer, both men and women are affected and usually are older than 45 years.

Unfortunately we know very little about the causes of cancer of the large intestine, also called colorectal cancer. However, studies have shown that the frequency of bowel cancer is highest in countries that consume a diet high in fat and low in fiber. It has been suggested that a high intake of alcohol, especially beer, may be linked to this type of cáncer.Hay two inherited conditions that may increase the risk of developing colorectal cancer. They are familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) and hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer (HNPCC). Together, they account for 5% of intestinal cancers.

A history of severe ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease affects the large intestine may also increase the risk of developing colorectal cancer. The most common symptom of colorectal cancer is a change in bowel habits. You can increase constipation, or perhaps can alternate periods of constipation and diarrhea. You may have blood or mucus in the stool. A feeling that you have not completely evacuated their gut is quite common when the tumor is in the rectum. This can be uncomfortable and can constantly feel the need to go to baño.Usted may feel a cramping pain or vague discomfort in the abdomen. You can also feel generally unwell, for example, apathetic or tired, because you’ve been losing blood from the intestine and may have become anemia (lack of red blood cells). If your symptoms have lasted for six or more weeks, including bleeding from the straight, you need to see a specialist.

Cancers of the colon and rectum:

Adenocarcinoma. Adenocarcinomas are tumors that originate in the lining of internal organs. Adeno means gland. These tumors arise from cells with glandular properties, or secreting cells. They can form in many different organs, such as the lung or breast. In colorectal cancer, early tumors start as small adenomatous polyps that can continue to grow and become malignant. The vast majority of colorectal cancers are adenocarcinomas.
Gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST). These are tumors that originate in the specialized cells in the wall of the digestive tract called interstitial cells of Cajal. These tumors can be found anywhere in the digestive tract, but rarely appear in the colon. They can be benign (noncancerous) at first, but many become cancer. When this happens, they are called sarcomas. Surgery is the usual treatment if the tumor has not spread.
Lymphoma. A lymphoma is a cancer that typically begins in a lymph node, which is part of the immune system. However, it can also start in the colon, rectum, or other organs.
Carcinoids. Carcinoids are tumors that originate in particular hormone-producing cells in the intestine. Often cause no symptoms at first. Surgery is the usual treatment.
Sarcoma. Tumors that arise in blood vessel, muscle or connective tissue in the colon and the rectum wall.

Colon surgery

Often, the primary treatment for colorectal cancer is surgery, which removes the cancer and a length of normal tissue on either side of the cancer and nearby lymph nodes.

Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatic cancer occurs when malignant cells grow out of control. Surgery for pancreatic cancer may be needed to remove the tumor – a section or entire pancreas and / or small intestine. The type of surgery depends on the stage of the cancer, the location and size of the tumor and the health of the person.

The types of surgery for pancreatic cancer include the following:

Whipple procedure – this procedure involves removal of the head of the pancreas, part of the small intestine, the gallbladder, part of the stomach, and lymph nodes near the head of the pancreas. Most pancreatic tumors occur in the head of the pancreas, so Whipple procedure is the most common surgical procedure for pancreatic cancer.

Distal pancreatectomy – if the tumor is located in the body and tail of the pancreas, these two sections of the pancreas is removed along with the spleen.

Total pancreatectomy – the entire pancreas, part of the small intestine and stomach, the common bile duct, spleen, gallbladder, and some lymph nodes will be removed. This type of operation is not performed frequently.

Palliative surgery – for more advanced cancers, surgery may be done to try to cure the cancer, but to relieve problems such as a blocked bile duct.

Risk factors for pancreatic cancer include:

  • Age – most pancreatic cancer occurs in people over 45 years.
  • Smoking – the big cigarette smokers are two to three times more likely than nonsmokers to develop pancreatic cancer.
  • Obesity and physical inactivity – pancreatic cancer is more common in people who are very overweight, and people who do not get much physical activity.
  • Diabetes – Pancreatic cancer occurs more often in people with diabetes than in those who do not.
  • Gender – more men than women are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
  • Race – African Americans are more likely than Asians, Hispanics or Caucasians to be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
  • Family history – the risk of developing pancreatic cancer is higher if a person’s mother, father, or brother had the disease.
  • Cirrhosis of the liver – people with cirrhosis have a higher risk of pancreatic cancer.
  • Exhibitions of work – occupational exposure to pesticides, dyes and chemicals used in the metal industry may increase the risk of pancreatic cancer.
  • Some genetic syndromes – certain inherited genetic mutations, such as in gene BRAC2 increase the risk of pancreatic cancer.
  • Chronic pancreatitis – long-term inflammation of the pancreas has been linked with an increased risk of pancreatic cancer.

There are several types of pancreatic cancers, including the following:

  • Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma – the most common pancreatic cancer, which occurs in the lining of the pancreatic duct.
  • Adenosquamous carcinoma – a rare pancreatic cancer.
  • Squamous cell carcinoma – a rare pancreatic cancer.
  • Some pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors include the following – which may be benign (not cancerous) or malignant (cancerous):
  • Insulinoma – a rare pancreatic tumor that secretes insulin, the hormone that lowers glucose levels in the blood.
  • Gastrinoma – a tumor that average levels of gastrin, a hormone that stimulates the stomach to secrete acid and enzymes. Gastrinoma can cause peptic ulcers.
  • Glucagonoma – a tumor that secretes glucagon, a hormone that increases glucose levels in the blood, often leading to an eruption.