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Digestive Disorders

Stage 4 stomach cancer whilst pegnant

02/17/2010

Question:

My 36 year old sister just had her baby boy and has also been diagnosed with stage 4 cancer at the same time. It originated from the stomach and has moved to one of her ovaries. The surgeon has removed the ovaries, uterus and fallopian tubes. At this time there is no visual signs of cancer in the liver. I`m lost on what to do and am very scared. Can you advise chances of recovery after chemo, is it operable, life expectancy and whether there is a miracle out there.

Answer:

Stage IV gastric cancer is a very serious illness. The next step should be chemotherapy. Your sister should schedule an appointment with a medical oncologist and be informed about the benefits and risks of chemotherapy. The reason for chemotherapy is to treat microscopic cells that may be present in the body that are too small to see with convential CT scans. Whether the cancer recurs depends on its response to chemotherapy. The five year survial rate for stage IV cancer is less than 15%, and unfortunately no "miracle" cure currently exists.

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Response by:

Syed A Ahmad, MD Syed A Ahmad, MD
Associate Professor of Surgery
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati