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Stomach Cancer Treatment and Radiation

Stomach cancer is a type of disease in which cancer cells tend to originate and grow within the lining of the stomach. There are many types of stomach cancers as well as different treatment options. The type of treatment chosen has a lot to do with the type of stomach cancer, its degree of progression and the overall health of the patient. We will discuss one course of treatment involving radiation therapy which is often known as stomach cancer radiation. 

Stomach cancer radiation involves the application of radiation to kill cancer cells. There are two major types of treatment. One involves the use of a type of radiation gun which resides outside of the body and which directs a radioactive beam to the affected area of the stomach. Another type can involve the placement of radioactive pellets inside of the stomach in order to try to use this radiation to kill the cancer cells. 

Stomach cancer radiation may be used either in place of or in addition to other kinds of treatment. It may be a viable option if the cancer cannot be treated effectively through surgical removal or through chemotherapy. It can be used to treat the tumors and reduce their size so that they may be able to be removed surgically more effectively and completely. 

This type of therapy may also be used to help to kill any remaining cancer cells following some type of surgical procedure. This helps to minimize the risk of cancer reappearing in the same spot. 

This type of treatment is often administered over a period of several days. This helps to provide a strong dose of radiation to the effected cells but gives the healthy part of a body a chance to recover and heal a little before the next treatment. 

If the stomach cancer has progressed to the point where it has spread to other parts of the body, then stomach cancer radiation may be used primarily to slow the progression of the disease and improve the symptoms. It is meant to be a way to extend the life of the patient in the best possible manner rather than try to cure the disease. 

Keep in mind that while stomach cancer radiation can be an effective course of treatment, it can create some side effects. These can include the following:

  • Nausea and diarrhea. The radiation can affect sensitive tissues in and around the stomach which cause these kinds of side effects.
  • The skin may exhibit soreness, itchiness and pain. This is very typical of an external type of radiation therapy. This problem tends to dissipate once treatment has been completed.
  • And this kind of treatment may cause pain in the stomach or intestine due to its aggressive nature and ability to kill cells. Some type of pain management is often necessary such as drugs or other types of pain killers.

So this type of treatment can be a very effective way to treat stomach cancer. However it must be used carefully in order to provide maximum dosage to the affected areas while minimizing the exposure of healthy tissues to radiation.