Stomach Cancer Therapy
The treatment of gastric cancer depends on the tumor stage , which is determined by means of staging and grading , and on the Laurén classification , which indicates how the tumor spreads.
In the early stages, the goal of the treatment is to completely remove the tumor and thereby permanently cure the disease. Very small, superficial tumors can be removed using an endoscope , but most tumors are removed during surgery. An operation is possible if the tumor has not yet grown into surrounding tissue and has not spread. In Germany, about six out of ten patients with gastric carcinoma are operated on. 1 Depending on the location and spread of the tumor, total or partial removal of the stomach is the only way to completely remove the tumor. 1 The surrounding lymph nodes of the stomach are also removed and examined for metastases.
In addition, chemotherapy is often started before surgery and continued after surgery. It is intended to reduce the size of the tumor before surgery and then destroy any remaining tumor cells in the body, thereby reducing the risk of relapse. In patients with carcinoma of the esophagogastric junction (AEG tumors), radiochemotherapy is also recommended after surgery in some circumstances .
If the stomach cancer is already advanced, surgery is usually no longer possible. The aim of the treatment is then to slow down further tumor growth, relieve discomfort and maintain the quality of life. For this purpose, usually a chemotherapy is performed, which can also be combined with a targeted therapy .
The therapy often takes place in clinics or hospitals specializing in the treatment of cancer. As a rule, the therapy concept is decided in an interdisciplinary tumor conference. Several physicians of different disciplines discuss the diagnosis and the general condition of the patient and work together to develop an individual treatment plan.