April is Oesophageal Cancer Awareness Month

Gastric and oesophageal cancers symptoms and diagnosis


Symptoms of gastric and oesophageal cancers

As is the case with several other types of cancer, symptoms of oesophageal and gastric cancer often do not appear in the early stages. And many of the early symptoms are vague and easy to mistake for other less serious conditions. As a result, oesophageal and gastric cancers tend to be diagnosed at a more advanced stage.

When symptoms do appear, they often affect your digestion, and can include:

Oesophageal cancerGastric cancer
Symptoms of indigestion, such as burping a lotSymptoms of indigestion, such as burping a lot
Heartburn or acid refluxHeartburn or acid reflux
Having problems swallowing (dysphagia)Persistent stomach pain
Feeling or being sickFeeling very full or bloated after meals

Symptoms of more advanced oesophageal and gastric cancer can include:

  • blood in your stools, or black stools
  • loss of appetite or feeling full after eating small amounts
  • losing significant weight without trying – significant weight is defined as losing more than 10% of your body weight

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