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The Link Between Gastric Ulcers and Stomach Cancer

Monday, June 16, 2014
Stomach CancerRecent studies have established the link between a gastric ulcer and stomach cancer.  A gastric or peptic ulcer is a sore that can develop on the walls of the stomach when the protective lining in our stomach stops working. The digestive system gets eroded by acidic digestive juices and hence a sour stomach may be an early sign of this disease.

How Ulcer Leads To Cancer – Gastric ulcers are mainly caused due to the presence of the helicobacter pylori bacteria. The infection caused by H pylori is also linked to carcinoma or cancer. As a gastric ulcer is an open sore, bacteria can infect it easily. It causes mutations in the DNA and damages the cells of the stomach lining. Long-standing inflammation can lead to chronic inflammation of the stomach and even stomach cancer. The damaged gastric tissue is replaced by intestinal or fibrous tissue naturally. This transformation is one of the first symptoms of stomach cancer as it increases the chances of its occurrence.

Increased Risk – The chances of an ulcer turning to stomach cancer is heightened by certain factors. Individuals with gastric ulcer should be aware that drinking, smoking, or chewing tobacco can accelerate the chances of the ulcer turning into stomach cancer. They increase the production of stomach acids.

Aspirin and other anti-inflammatory drugs reduce the stomach's ability to produce a protective mucus. They also accelerate the production of acids in the stomach. Such medicines reduce the flow of blood to the stomach, thus undermining the body's ability to repair cells. All of these factors increase the chances of developing cancer.

For patients with stomachache, nausea, or vomiting, it's always better to get checked by a doctor as soon as possible. All these may possibly be the symptoms of stomach cancer. There is medication available for curing gastric ulcer before it reaches the cancerous stage. Medications reduce the acid levels in the stomach and prevent the chances of its recurrence.

Complications – Gastric ulcer is definitely curable; even stomach cancer in the first stages can be curable. But why allow a stomach ulcer to turn into cancer due to sheer negligence? The walls of the stomach get perforated and lead to cancer and internal bleeding. So be wary of such complications and consult a doctor if you have any symptoms of a stomach ulcer.

More: Gastrointestinal Cancer
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