Advanced Treatment for All Types of Gastrointestinal Cancer at Dignity Health
Gastrointestinal (GI) cancer, or stomach cancer, affects any of the organs of your digestive tract.
- Pancreatic cancer
- Small intestine cancer
- Stomach (gastric) cancer
- Gallbladder cancer
- Liver cancer
- Anal cancer
- Colon cancer
- Rectal cancer
- Esophageal cancer
Come to St. Joseph's Cancer Institute for a trusted diagnosis and treatment plan for gastrointestinal cancer in the Stockton region. While there are a wide range of gastrointestinal cancers, many of the treatment options are the same. Our team uses the latest methods and equipment to effectively treat your specific type of cancer. Find a Doctor or nurse navigator at one of our state-of-the-art hospitals to receive expert care.
Gastrointestinal Cancer Symptoms
Signs and symptoms of GI cancer depend on the specific cancer and the organ it affects. In the early stages, there are often no symptoms of GI cancer, and it’s nearly impossible to feel the tumors as they develop. As a result, GI cancers are often advanced and causing symptoms at the time of diagnosis.
Symptoms may include:
- Digestive problems
- Jaundice, a yellowing of the eyes and skin
- Bloody or very dark stool
- Changes in bowel habits, such as diarrhea, constipation, changes in consistency or narrowing of the stool
- Difficulty swallowing
- Nausea and vomiting
- Swelling in the abdomen
- Tiredness, weakness, weight loss, or loss of appetite
- Abdominal cramping or pain
What Causes Gastrointestinal Cancer?
Health experts don’t fully understand the cause of GI cancer. Risk factors vary for each type. However, lifestyle factors may play a role in many of them. This includes not exercising, smoking, obesity, heavy alcohol use, and poor diet. Family history may also play a part.
Expert Gastrointestinal Cancer Treatment with Dignity Health
Treatment and prevention options depend on the specific type of GI cancer. Surgery is a common treatment for most GI cancers. As we create your personalized treatment plan, your doctor at Dignity Health may also recommend the following treatment options:
- Targeted therapy to destroy cancer by using markers present only on cancer cells
- Chemotherapy to kill cancer cells or stop them from growing
- Radiation therapy to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors
Fortunately, screening tests can diagnose colon and rectal cancer in early, highly treatable stages before symptoms develop. Colonoscopy is a common screening tool, in addition to several others. Talk with your doctor about when you should start cancer screenings.
As some GI cancer risk factors involve your overall health and wellness, prevention starts through a healthy lifestyle. You can help reduce your risk of GI cancer with a balanced diet, regular physical activity, not smoking, and limiting alcohol consumption. Partner with an expert at Dignity Health to stay health and prevent cancer.
As part of our state-of-the-art oncology services, St. Joseph's Cancer Institute provides expert diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal cancer throughout Northern California.