Stomach Cancer (cont.)
Two procedures are used in the diagnosis of stomach cancer.
- Gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy is superior because it allows a direct view of the area of concern. The doctor can also take a sample of tissue (biopsy) to confirm the diagnosis.
- Barium studies are also effective in detecting stomach cancers, although they may be less effective in detecting small tumors.
- Suspicious areas seen on barium study always require further endoscopic checking.
- Barium studies may have a major role in screening because they cause less discomfort compared with gastroscopy.
- Once doctors establish the diagnosis, further tests are performed, including the following:
- A CT scan of the abdomen
- Chest x-ray film
- Nuclear bone scans: These may be helpful in ruling out advanced disease that has spread outside your stomach walls.
Robert J Fingerote, MD, MSc, BSc
Scott H Plantz, MD, FAAEM
Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD
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