- Cancer of the small intestine - causes and risk factors
- Small intestine cancer - symptoms
- See what diet reduces cancer risk
- Small intestine cancer - diagnosis, treatment and prognosis
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Cancer of the small intestine is the least frequently diagnosed neoplasm of the digestive system. Unfortunately, due to its rarity, as well as non-specific symptoms and localization that make testing difficult, small intestine cancer is usually diagnosed at an advanced stage of development, which significantly reduces the prognosis of patients. What are the causes and symptoms of small intestine cancer? What is the treatment of this type of cancer?
Cancer of the small intestineis a rare cancer. However, when pathological changes develop, more than half of them occur in the duodenum, and the rest appear in the jejunum and slightly less often in the tortuous intestine, most often in the form of adenocarcinomas, carcinoids and leiomyosarcomas.
Stromal tumors and lymphomas are much less common in the small intestine.
People between the ages of 50 and 60 are most likely to develop cancer of the small intestine.
Cancer of the small intestine - causes and risk factors
Small intestine cancer is usually the result of metastases from neoplasms of other abdominal and pelvic organs, and as a primary tumor, i.e. originating from the small intestine, it usually appears in people suffering from diseases of this part of the gastrointestinal tract, such as Crohn's disease or polyposis syndromes, e.g. Gardner or Peutz-Jeghers syndrome.
The risk of developing cancer of the small intestine is also increased by celiac disease and congenital non-polyposis colorectal cancer.
Small intestine cancer - symptoms
Cancer of the small intestine consists of a complex of non-specific symptoms, such as:
- gastrointestinal bleeding
- stomach pains
Only in the advanced stage of development may appear the so-called acute abdomen, which is a group of rapidly developing symptoms such as a hard stomach, vomiting, decreased intestinal peristalsis, gas retention and very severe abdominal pain. A "sharp belly" may be the consequence of a bowel obstruction or perforation.
See what diet reduces cancer risk
Small intestine cancer - diagnosis, treatment and prognosis
Patients who complain of non-specific symptoms of small intestine cancer are usually referred for endoscopyupper and lower digestive tract. Unfortunately, this type of examination, while allowing direct evaluation of changes in the intestine, may indicate non-specific inflammatory or degenerative changes that may mask and delay diagnosis. Therefore, in order to diagnose and assess the stage of neoplasm, a number of tests are performed. In addition to endoscopic examination, small intestine contrast examination, computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging are also performed. Arteriography and scintigraphy also help in making a final diagnosis - tests that are used in cases of gastrointestinal bleeding from an unclear source.
When diagnosed with cancer of the small intestine, surgery is usually performed to remove the bowel and the surrounding lymph nodes. Currently, research is conducted on the effectiveness of multi-drug chemotherapy.
Because of its rarity, as well as non-specific symptoms and location that make testing difficult, small intestine cancer is usually diagnosed at an advanced stage, greatly reducing patients' prognosis. Five-year survival is estimated at 25 to 40 percent.