Stomach Cancer Treatment Cost in India – Procedure, Best Doctors & Hospitals

Posted on March 31st, 2020 by Ganesh Gopakumar

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Cost of stomach cancer treatment in India

The cost of stomach cancer surgery in India is USD5500-6200.

A session of chemotherapy cost in India is USD650-1150.

Choice of Hospital

Cost varies widely based on the type of hospital you choose. The cost varies drastically when we go from an economy hospital to a premium hospital. The higher cost in premium hospitals is due to the higher room rent, cost for medical care, etc. The quality of treatment is the same.

Choice of City

The choice of city also has great impact on the overall cost. The cost of food, accommodation, and transportation are much higher in Tier 1 cities. Hospitals in metro cities also charge higher for medical care. Tier 2 cities are cheaper.

The following table shows how many days you would be staying in India if you are opting for stomach cancer surgery.

Days in hospital 2 weeks
Days outside hospital3-4 weeks
Total days in India5-6 weeks

Stomach cancer

It is cancer that starts in the stomach, mainly in the mucus-producing cells. This type is often referred to as adenocarcinoma. There will be abnormal growth of these cells which leads to the formation of a tumor. The gastroesophageal (GI)  junction is more prone to cancer. The GI junction is the area where the esophagus (food pipe) joins with the upper part of the stomach (cardia). 

Stomach cancer is the 6th most common cancer, but 3rd in terms of cancer-related deaths. According to the WHO, 783,000 people died worldwide due to stomach cancer in 2018.

Symptoms of stomach cancer

There are many symptoms for stomach cancer but they don’t show up until cancer quickly as the stomach cancer grows really slowly. So it’s really hard for a patient to know he has it until it has grown to a large extent. Once they start showing symptoms, it could be:

  • Bloating
  • Feeling full after eating less
  • Swallowing difficulty
  • Frequent burping
  • Heartburn
  • Stomach pain
  • Gas formation
  • Vomiting, with or without blood
  • Pain near the breastbone
  • Indigestion that does not gets solved
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Black stools which may contain blood
  • A buildup of fluid in the stomach

Causes of stomach cancer

The mutation in DNA in a cell is the start of cancer, which then divides and divides to form a tumor. The exact reason for the mutation is yet unknown. But the gastroesophageal reflex has something to do with it. People with GI reflex have a higher chance of having stomach cancer than unhealthy eater or smoker. This is because the GI reflex lets a small amount of acid from the stomach to reach this junction. It could be the reason for the mutation.

However dietary factors and smoking can increase your risk of having a stomach cancer developed:

  • Salty and smoked food
  • Eating less fruits and vegetables 
  • Family history of stomach cancer
  • Smoking
  • Stomach polyps

How can stomach cancer be prevented?

  • Exercise  regularly
  • Increase your intake of healthy fruits and vegetables
  • Reduce salt and smoked foods in your diet
  • Quit smoking

How is stomach cancer diagnosed?

  • Physical exam 
  • X-ray
  • CT scan
  • MRI scan
  • Blood test
  • Biopsy
  • Ultrasound scan

Stages of stomach cancer

Stage I

Stage IB

The tumor has grown from the top layer of cells of the mucosa into the next layers below such as the lamina propria, the muscularis mucosa, or submucosa. It has not spread to nearby lymph nodes or to distant sites.

Stage IB

Is it the same as Stage 1A, but cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes as well. However, it has not spread to distal areas and organs

Stage II

Stage IIB

Same as the above stage, but it has spread to more than 5 lymph nodes. It has not spread to distal organs.

Stage IIB

Cancer has no spread to 12-15 lymph nodes.

Stage III

Stage IIIA

Cancer is now growing into the muscularis propria layer and has spread to about 15 lymph nodes. Distal organs are yet unaffected. 

Stage IIIB

It has now spread to many layers of the stomach and affected more than 16 lymph nodes.

Stage IIIC

It has now spread to the subserosa layer and affecting more than 16 lymph nodes.

Stage IV

Cancer has now spread into any layers of the stomach. It has also spread to distal organs such as liver, lungs, brain, and the peritoneum. 

Treatment options

There are various treatment methods available today for stomach cancer. The choice depends upon the stage of cancer, the health condition, and the patient’s choice.

Surgery

The surgeon removes the cancer and maybe a small margin of healthy cells. This is done to ensure that no cancer cells are left behind. The surgery is of various types:

  • Endoscopic mucosal resection: 

The surgeon removes small tumors from the mucosal layer through endoscopy. The major advantage is there is no need for an incision, and easier to perform on patients who have low general health. This, however, can only be done for patients with first stage stomach cancer, where the cancer has not spread to surrounding areas. 

  • Subtotal gastrectomy: 

This is the surgical procedure where a part of the stomach is removed. This usually requires an incision, and the patient should be healthy. This is done for patients with a large part of the stomach affected by cancer. 

  • Total gastrectomy: 

The complete removal of the stomach using surgical procedures. The esophagus is then connected directly to the small intestine for digestion. This is done when almost the whole stomach has been affected by the tumor. The patient needs to have good overall health for this procedure as a large incision is required. 

Post-procedure care is very important with surgery as large incisions can lead to infections and other complications. There would be a hospital stay for at least 2 weeks after the procedure. You will also have to rest at home after you get home from the hospital. You will probably have to be at home for 3-4weeks.

 

Radiation therapy

This is not preferred in stomach cancer as it can kill the surrounding healthy cells. However, it is used if severe symptoms such as bleeding or intense pain are observed. It is usually combined with chemotherapy prior to surgery. The radiation therapy along with chemo shrinks the tumor. Hence, it becomes easier to be surgically removed.

It has several side effects such as nausea, indigestion, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is a specialist treatment that uses drugs to stop rapidly-growing cancer cells from dividing and multiplying. These drugs are known as cytotoxic medicines. It is a primary treatment for stomach cancer that has spread to distant sites in the body. It attacks all the cancer cells in the body and hence suitable for cancers which have also spread to other parts. This may be combined with radiation therapy or surgery for better results. 

Targeted therapy

Targeted therapies recognize and attack specific proteins that cancer cells produce. While chemotherapy targets rapidly dividing cells in general, targeted medications prevent growth by cutting off the chemicals needed by it to grow. 

  • Trastuzumab (Herceptin): This targets HER2, a protein that promotes cell growth. Some stomach cancers produce an excess of HER2.
  • Ramucirumab (Cyramza): This medication focuses on blocking a protein called VEGF that tells the body to produce the new blood vessels that tumors need to grow.

Best Doctors in India for Stomach Cancer Treatment

  1. Dr. VP Singh
  2. Dr. Aditya Gupta
  3. Dr. MR Sivakumar
  4. Dr. Paneer A
  5. Dr. Rajendran S
  6. Dr. Rajeev Anand
  7. Dr. Sangeetha Ravat
  8. Dr. Sreekanta Swamy
  9. Dr. Chandran Gnanamuthu
  10. Dr. Prathipa Singhi

Best Hospitals in India for Stomach Cancer Treatment

  1. Paras Hospital, Gurgaon
  2. Medanta Hospital, New Delhi
  3. Artemis Hospital, Delhi
  4. Max Hospital, New Delhi
  5. Nanavati Hospital, Mumbai
  6. BLK Super Speciality Hospital, New Delhi
  7. Indraprastha Apollo Hospital, New Delhi
  8. Artemis Hospital, Gurgaon
  9. Fortis Flt. Lt. Rajan Dhall Hospital, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi
  10. Max Super Specialty Hospital, Gurgaon

FAQ

Is stomach cancer age-related?

Partly yes and partly no! It is mainly lifestyle-related, the food, your habits have a major impact on the disease. However, as you are affected more and more as you happen to follow the same lifestyle for more years. Hence, 2 out of 3 stomach cancer patients are above 65 years old. 

Are there any limitations after stomach cancer surgery?

Yes. You should follow a light diet as your doctor told you for a few days. You should lift anything heavy until you have recovered from the surgery. Make sure your incisions do not get infected.

How will I know whether the treatment is working?

You can always as your doctor about your progress, he will surely know. In most cases, you will have relief in pain and discomfort. There could be less bleeding and pain when the treatment works.


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