General Information About Stomach Cancer
Stomach (gastric) cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the stomach.
The stomach is a J-shaped organ in the upper abdomen. It is part of the digestive system, which processes nutrients (vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and water) in foods that are eaten and helps pass waste material out of the body. Food moves from the throat to the stomach through a hollow, muscular tube called the esophagus. After leaving the stomach, partly-digested food passes into the small intestine and then into the large intestine.
The stomach and esophagus are part of the upper digestive system.
See the following PDQ summaries for more information about stomach cancer:
- Stomach (Gastric) Cancer Screening
- Gastric Cancer Treatment
The number of new cases of stomach cancer has remained about the same over the past several years in the United States.
Over the past several years, the number of new cases of stomach cancer in the United States has remained about the same. Men are more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with stomach cancer than women.
Stomach cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the world.
The number of deaths from stomach cancer has decreased over many years, especially in the United States. Black men are more than twice as likely to die from stomach cancer than white men.