Diagnosis of Stomach Cancer
To find out if a patient has stomach cancer, the doctor will first ask for the symptoms he feels. In addition, the doctor will also ask if the patient is suffering from a certain condition that can increase the risk of stomach cancer or whether he has a close family of colon cancer patients.
After the patient’s explanation is obtained, the doctor can perform a simple examination by checking the patient’s abdomen to see any swelling around the stomach.
To ascertain whether a person has gastric cancer, the doctor will perform further tests, such as:
- Examination of feces for the presence of blood.
- Blood test.
- Endoscopy. This check is done by inserting a small special tool such as a tube into the stomach through the esophagus. Tools equipped with this camera can help doctors see the presence of cancer. Through endoscopic examination, doctors can also take a sample of gastric tissue (biopsy) for later investigation in the laboratory.
- X-ray. In the case of stomach cancer, X-ray examination will be combined with a liquid containing barium substances. Substances that must be swallowed by this patient will help X-rays produce images on the monitor. For 6 hours before performing this inspection procedure, patients are not allowed to consume food or drink, and the examination usually lasts 15 minutes. The side effects patients may experience after this examination are nausea and constipation.
- CT scan. This examination can help the doctor know how far the development of cancer, whether the cancer is only in the stomach or has spread to other organs. Scanning using this X-ray circuit and computer help can produce detailed body images.
- Laparoscopic surgery. This inspection procedure is performed by inserting a camera device called a laparoscope through a small incision made by the doctor in the lower abdomen. Surely in this procedure the patient should be drugged first. Laparoscopic surgery aims to see the state of the stomach in more detail. Through this examination, doctors can tell if stomach cancer has spread, especially to the peritoneum or lining of the abdominal cavity.
- Ultrasound. Examination by using ultrasound waves is intended to see whether stomach cancer has invaded the liver.