Gastrointestinal cancer

Gastrointestinal cancer refers to malignant conditions of the gastrointestinal tract (GI tract) and accessory organs of digestion, including the esophagus, stomach, biliary system, pancreas, small intestine, large intestine, rectum and anus. The symptoms relate to the organ affected and can include obstruction (leading to difficulty swallowing or defecating), abnormal bleeding or other associated problems. The diagnosis often requires endoscopy, followed by biopsy of suspicious tissue. The treatment depends on the location of the tumor, as well as the type of cancer cell and whether it has invaded other tissues or spread elsewhere. These factors also determine the prognosis.

Symptoms of Gastro Intestinal and HPB Cancers

Symptoms may include:

  • Abdominal pain and discomfort.
  • Change in bowel habits.
  • Rectal bleeding.
  • Bloating.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Unusual weight loss.
  • Fatigue.

Treatments of Gastro Intestinal and HPB Cancers

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SURGERY

Surgery is used to remove a cancerous or noncancerous growth or damaged part of the body, such as the intestine.

It is a treatment for diseases of the parts of the body involved in digestion. This includes the esophagus (ee-sof-uh-gus), stomach, small intestine, large intestine, and rectum. It also includes the liver, gallbladder, and pancreas.

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RADIATION THERAPY

Radiation therapy is the use of high-energy x-rays or other particles to destroy cancer cells. A radiation therapy regimen, or schedule, usually consists of a specific number of treatments given over a set period of time. People with stomach cancer usually receive external-beam radiation therapy, which is radiation given from a machine outside the body. Radiation therapy may be used before surgery to shrink the size of the tumor or after surgery to destroy any remaining cancer cells.

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CHEMOTHERAPY

Chemotherapy is the use of drugs to destroy cancer cells, usually by keeping the cancer cells from growing, dividing, and making more cells. A chemotherapy regimen, or schedule, usually consists of a specific number of cycles given over a set period of time. A patient may receive 1 drug at a time or a combination of different drugs given at the same time.

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