Stomach cancer is cancer that develops in the stomach. In the early stages, stomach cancer can cause stomach discomfort, indigestion, and loss of appetite.

Stomach cancer does not always cause symptoms in the early stages. If symptoms do appear, they may include bloating, unexplained weight loss, and nausea. Many other conditions can cause similar symptoms, but a person should contact a doctor if they have persistent or unusual symptoms. Doctors may use a series of tests, such as blood tests, endoscopy, and imaging tests, to determine if a person has stomach cancer.

This article is about stomach cancer, its early detection, warning signs, diagnosis, etc.


Symptoms of stomach cancer can be:

abdominal pain or vague discomfort, usually above the navel
loss of appetite
unexplained weight loss
feeling full or bloated after eating a small amount of food
swelling or accumulation of fluid in the abdomen
stomach pains
vomiting, with or without blood
blood in stool
fatigue and weakness due to low red blood cell count
jaundice, which causes yellowing of the skin and eyes and can occur if the cancer spreads to the liver.

Early detection

Doctors may recommend routine screening for people at high risk for stomach cancer, such as those with certain genetic conditions.
This can help them find stomach cancer early through tests such as endoscopy.

To check if a person has stomach cancer, doctors may do the following tests:

a physical examination of the abdomen to check for any abnormal signs
a complete review of medical history, including family history
blood chemistry tests to check if levels of certain substances are higher or lower, which may indicate cancer
a complete blood count to check the amount of red blood cells, as well as the levels of white blood cells, platelets, and hemoglobin
an upper endoscopy, which uses a flexible tube with a camera to look inside the esophagus, stomach, and first part of the small intestine
a biopsy, in which doctors may remove a sample of tissue during endoscopy for laboratory testing
imaging tests, such as X-rays, CT scans, and positron emission tomograms (PET).

Tests such as upper endoscopy can help doctors find stomach cancer early. Endoscopy can help doctors identify small, subtle changes that may indicate cancer.

When to consult a doctor

It is advisable to consult a doctor if one has symptoms of stomach cancer, especially if the symptoms do not go away or worsen. Many minor conditions, such as an infection or an ulcer, can cause symptoms similar to those of stomach cancer. It is important to find out the underlying cause of any unusual or persistent symptoms. People who have symptoms of stomach cancer for more than two weeks should see a doctor. These include unexplained weight loss, severe abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, and tarry or bloody stools.

Frequently Asked Questions

This section answers some common questions about what it feels like to have stomach cancer.

What are the early warning signs of stomach cancer?

In the early stages, stomach cancer may cause no symptoms. If a person has symptoms of early-stage cancer, these may include:

stomach discomfort
stomach pains
bloated feeling after eating
mild nausea
loss of appetite

How does it feel when you have stomach cancer?

People with stomach cancer may have abdominal symptoms, such as stomach pain or discomfort, and may feel full after eating little. They may also feel nauseous.

A person with stomach cancer may feel more tired than usual. People with stomach cancer may suffer from anemia due to low red blood cell count, which can lead to fatigue, weakness and shortness of breath. Cancer causes changes in the body that can lead to severe fatigue, even after resting. Worry about cancer can also cause fatigue.

How to check for stomach cancer?

It can be difficult to check for stomach cancer because in the early stages of the disease it may not cause any symptoms. Many symptoms of early-stage stomach cancer can be similar to those of other gastrointestinal conditions. There is no routine screening for stomach cancer for the general population, but people at high risk can have routine screening to check for stomach cancer. Knowing the early signs and symptoms can help people spot anything unusual. It is advisable to consult a doctor as soon as possible in case of worrying symptoms.


Stomach cancer may not cause symptoms in the early stages, but if people have symptoms, they may experience abdominal pain and discomfort. A person may feel full after eating a small amount, and they may experience bloating, indigestion, or nausea. Fatigue and unexplained weight loss can also be signs of cancer. Many other conditions can cause symptoms similar to stomach cancer, but it’s important to see a doctor to find out the underlying cause of any persistent or concerning symptoms.

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the advice of a health professional.