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People who died from Stomach Cancer

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Stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer, is cancer developing from the lining of the stomach.

  • * Stomach cancer usually begins in the mucus-producing cells that line the stomach. This type of cancer is called adenocarcinoma.
  • Early symptoms may include heartburn, upper abdominal pain, nausea and loss of appetite.
  • Later signs and symptoms may include weight loss, yellow skin, vomiting, difficulty swallowing, and blood in the stool among others.
  • The cancer may spread from the stomach to other parts of the body, particularly the liver, lungs, bones, lining of the abdomen and lymph nodes.

Parts of the stomach

  • Cardia: The first part is closest to the esophagus
  • Fundus: The upper part of the stomach next to the cardia
  • Body (corpus): The main part of the stomach, between the upper and lower parts
  • Antrum: The lower portion (near the intestine), where the food mixes with gastric juice
  • Pylorus: The last part of the stomach, which acts as a valve to control emptying of the stomach contents into the small intestine

Types of stomach cancers

  • Adenocarcinoma
    • Most (about 90% to 95%) cancers of the stomach are adenocarcinomas. A stomach cancer or gastric cancer almost always is an adenocarcinoma. These cancers develop from the cells that form the innermost lining of the stomach (the mucosa).
  • Lymphoma
    • These are cancers of the immune system tissue that are sometimes found in the wall of the stomach. The treatment and outlook depend on the type of lymphoma. For more detailed information, see Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.
  • Gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST)
    • These rare tumors start in very early forms of cells in the wall of the stomach called interstitial cells of Cajal. Some of these tumors are non-cancerous (benign); others are cancerous. Although GISTs can be found anywhere in the digestive tract, most are found in the stomach. For more information, see Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor (GIST).
  • Carcinoid tumor
    • These tumors start in hormone-making cells of the stomach. Most of these tumors do not spread to other organs. These tumors are discussed in more detail in Gastrointestinal Carcinoid Tumors.
  • Other cancers
    • Other types of cancer, such as squamous cell carcinoma, small cell carcinoma, and leiomyosarcoma, can also start in the stomach, but these cancers are very rare.


There are many known risk factors for stomach cancer, but it is not known exactly how these factors cause cells of the stomach lining to become cancerous. This is the subject of ongoing research.

  • The most common cause is infection by the bacterium Helicobacter pylori, which accounts for more than 60% of cases. Certain types of H. pylori have greater risks than others.
  • Other common causes include eating pickled vegetables and smoking.
  • About 10% of cases run in families and between 1% and 3% of cases are due to genetic syndromes inherited from a person's parents such as hereditary diffuse gastric cancer.

Most cases of stomach cancers are gastric carcinomas. This type can be divided into a number of subtypes.

  • Lymphomas and mesenchymal tumors may also develop within the stomach. Most of the time, stomach cancer develops through a number of stages over a number of years.

Stages of Gastric Cancer

  • After gastric cancer has been diagnosed, tests are done to find out if cancer cells have spread within the stomach or to other parts of the body.
  • There are three ways that cancer spreads (metastasis) in the body.
    • Cancer can spread through tissue, the lymph system, and the blood
  • Cancer may spread from where it began to other parts of the body.
  • The following stages are used for gastric cancer:
    • Stage 0 (Carcinoma in Situ): Limited to the inner lining of the stomach. Treatable by endoscopic mucosal resection when found very early.
    • Stage I: Penetration to the second or third layers of the stomach (Stage 1A) or to the second layer and nearby lymph nodes (Stage 1B). Stage 1A is treated by surgery, including removal of the omentum. Stage 1B may be treated with chemotherapy (5-fluorouracil) and radiation therapy.
    • Stage II: Penetration to the second layer and more distant lymph nodes, or the third layer and only nearby lymph nodes, or all four layers but not the lymph nodes. Treated as for Stage I.
    • Stage III: Penetration to the third layer and more distant lymph nodes, or penetration to the fourth layer and either nearby tissues or nearby or more distant lymph nodes. Treated as for Stage II; a cure is still possible in some cases.
    • Stage IV: Cancer has spread to nearby tissues and more distant lymph nodes, or has metastasized to other organs. A cure is very rarely possible at this stage

Diagnosis is usually by biopsy done during endoscopy. This is then followed by medical imaging to determine if the disease has spread to other parts of the body. Japan and South Korea, two countries that have high rates of disease, screen for stomach cancer.

Prognosis & statistics:

  • The prognosis of stomach cancer is generally poor, due to the fact the tumor has often metastasized by the time of discovery and the fact that most people with the condition are elderly (median age is between 70 and 75 years) at presentation.
  • The average life expectancy after being diagnosed is around 24 months, and the five-year survival rate for stomach cancer is less than 10 percent.
  • A Mediterranean diet lowers the risk of cancer as does the stopping of smoking.
  • There is tentative evidence that treating H. pylori decreases the future risk.
  • If cancer is treated early, many cases can be cured.
    • Treatments may include some combination of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and targeted therapy.
  • If treated late, palliative care may be advised as it can rarely be cured.
  • Outcomes are often poor with a less than 10% 5-year survival rate globally. This is largely because most people with the condition present with advanced disease.
  • In the United States 5-year survival is 28% while in South Korea it is over 65% partly due to screening efforts.
  • Globally stomach cancer is the fifth leading cause of cancer and the third leading cause of death from cancer making up 7% of cases and 9% of deaths.
  • In 2012 it occurred in 950,000 people and caused 723,000 deaths.
  • In 2012, it represented 8.5% of cancer cases in men, making it the fourth most-common cancer in men.
  • Before the 1930s in much of the world, including the United States and the United Kingdom, it was the most common cause of death from cancer.
    • Rates of death have been decreasing in many areas of the world since then. This is believed to be due to the eating of less salted and pickled foods as a result of the development of refrigeration as a method of keeping food fresh.
  • Stomach cancer occurs most commonly in East Asia and Eastern Europe and it occurs twice as often in males as in females.
  • From: American Cancer Society – Key statistics about Stomach Cancer The American Cancer Society’s estimates for stomach cancer in the United States for 2020 are:
    • About 27,600 cases of stomach cancer will be diagnosed (16,980 in men and 10,620 in women)
    • About 11,010 people will die from this type of cancer (6,650 men and 4,360 women)
    • Stomach cancer mostly affects older people. The average age of people when they are diagnosed is 68. About 6 of every 10 people diagnosed with stomach cancer each year are 65 or older.
    • The risk that a man will develop stomach cancer in his lifetime is about 1 in 95. For women the chance is about 1 in 154.
    • In the US, the number of new cases of stomach cancer have decreased about 1.5% each year over the last 10 years. Stomach cancer is much more common in other parts of the world, particularly in less developed countries.
    • It is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths in the world.
  • From: Gleneagles hospital, Singapore – Stomach / Gastric Cancer. (Copyright 2020 Parkway Holdings Limited).
    • It is particularly common in East Asia.
    • It is the 6th most common cancer for Singaporean men, which means 1 in 50 men will develop stomach cancer in their lifetime.
    • In Singaporean women, it is the 8th most common cancer.
    • Stomach cancer claims about 300 lives yearly in Singapore.

Notables who died from Stomach Cancer

  1. Ranker – Famous People Who Died of Stomach Cancer (262 people listed)
  2. Wikipedia – Deaths from stomach cancer (200 people listed A-H)
  3. Wikipedia – Deaths from stomach cancer (200 people listed H-R)
  4. Wikipedia – Deaths from stomach cancer (117 people listed R-Z)

Resources & Additional Reading

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