Your Treatment Team for Stomach - Gastric Cancer
Stomach cancer, also called gastric cancer, is a relatively uncommon cancer that usually develops first in the lining of the stomach wall that contains glands for helping digest food and turn it into liquid. There are several treatment options, depending on the size, location and stage of the tumor.
The GI Tumor Team offers a high-volume surgical service for the surgical treatment of gastric cancer. A partial gastrectomy may be performed if the cancer is contained within the lower part of the stomach. The remaining stomach is then attached to the small intestine. If the cancer is located in the upper part of the stomach, the entire stomach, including nearby lymph nodes, parts of the esophagus and small intestine may be removed. The esophagus is then directly connected to the small intestine.
Chemotherapy is a treatment that uses therapeutic drugs to kill or slow tumor growth and prevent recurrence. It is often prescribed in addition to surgery or radiation therapy. Chemotherapy can be taken by mouth or injected into a vein or muscle. In addition to oral and systemic chemotherapy, patients with gastric cancer may receive targeted biologic therapy.
Radiation Therapy uses a type of high-energy X-ray to kill cancer cells. It is often combined with surgery or chemotherapy to prevent recurrence of the cancer. Radiation is also used when surgery is not an option because the cancer is too far advanced. The Gastric Cancer Treatment Team offers brachytherapy and neoadjuvant radiation therapy, as well as the latest high-tech, extremely precise radiation techniques such as intensity-modulated radiation therapy and Novalis Radiosurgery.
Clinical Research Trials
The GI Tumor Program supports landmark research in drug discovery, surgery, molecular therapy, immune therapy, endoscopy, risk assessment and detection. Breakthrough discoveries in the lab become early stage translational research studies and then patient clinical trials. Moffitt is known for its cutting-edge research in personalized medicine, which designs targeted treatments that improve patient outcomes, reduce side effects and prevent disease recurrence.
Treatment for Pain
Moffitt Cancer Center offers extensive pain and palliative care services. Your Gastric Cancer Treatment Team will address both pain management and symptom management to help improve your quality of life. Pain-relieving medications can help reduce symptoms, as can surgical procedures to stop bleeding or prevent the stomach or intestines from becoming blocked. These procedures include stents or an endoscope through which laser energy is directed, effectively vaporizing the cancer. In addition, Moffitt’s Integrative Medicine service offers a number of complementary modalities, such as acupuncture, massage therapy, imagery and relaxation techniques that can help control pain and offer a greater sense of well-being.