Cancer is an umbrella term for a range of diseases whereby cells in a specific part of the body grow and reproduce uncontrollably. The cancerous cells can invade and destroy surrounding healthy tissue, including organs. When your body undergoes these changes, it can produce a number of outward signs.
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One noticeable warning sign is feeling or being sick.
This unsettling symptom can be indicative of stomach cancer, a disease characterised by a growth of cancerous cells within the lining of the stomach.
How can stomach cancer cause nausea?
According to Cancer Research UK, stomach cancer can cause a small blockage in the stomach.
“This stops food from passing through your digestive symptom which can make you feel or be sick,” explains the charity.
The vomit may contain blood, although this is rare, notes the health body.
It explains: “You may not be able to see any blood if it is small amounts. The blood might be bright red, which means it is fresh bleeding.
“Or it may look dark brown, like used coffee grounds, if the blood has been in the stomach for a while.”
It is important to note that this symptom is also associated with stomach ulcers, open sores that develop on the lining of the stomach.
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Other symptoms associated with stomach cancer
According to the NHS, other obvious warning signs include:
- Losing weight without trying to
- Having problems swallowing (dysphagia)
- A lump at the top of your tummy
- Others might be harder to spot, such as:
- Heartburn or acid reflux
- Loss of appetite
- Symptoms of indigestion, such as burping a lot
- Feeling full very quickly when eating
- Pain at the top of your tummy
- Feeling tired or having no energy
As the NHS points out, you may find you get used to these symptoms, but it’s important to be checked by a GP if your symptoms change, get worse, or do not feel normal for you.
The health site also acknowledges these symptoms are very common and can be caused by a number of different conditions, but it’s important to get them checked by a GP.
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“This is because if they’re caused by cancer, finding it early makes it more treatable,” it explains.
Am I at risk?
Your risk of developing stomach cancer depends on many things including your age and lifestyle.
For example, stomach cancer is more prevalent in older people.
According to Cancer Research UK, around half of stomach cancers develop in people aged 75 or over.
Unhealthy lifestyle habits have also been linked to an increased risk of developing stomach cancer.
Around one in five of stomach cancers in the UK is linked to smoking, says Cancer Research UK.
What’s more, your risk increases with the number of cigarettes smoked a day, warns the charity.
“It is never too late to stop smoking but the sooner you stop the better,” it adds.
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