Stomach Cancer

Facts and Figures

  • Stomach cancer is the uncontrolled growth of cancerous cells that originate in stomach tissue.
  • The American Cancer Society estimates 21,000 Americans will be diagnosed and more than 10,500 will die from the disease in 2010.1
  • Currently, there are more than 64,000 people living with stomach cancer in the United States.2

Types of Stomach Cancer

  • The most common type of stomach cancer, called adenocarcinoma, originates in the innermost lining of the stomach and accounts for more than 90 percent of tumors.3
  • Adenocarcinoma of the stomach or the area where the stomach and esophagus
    join (gastroesophageal junction) is further divided into two categories, based on the genetic makeup of the tumor: human epidermal growth factor receptor 2
    (HER2)-positive and HER2-negative (sometimes referred to as “HER2-normal”). 
  • In advanced (metastatic) stomach cancer, the cancer has moved beyond the wall of the stomach and into nearby organs. This makes the cancer harder to treat and results in a poorer prognosis.3
  • According to one large study, 22 percent of adenocarcinoma stomach cancers are
    HER2-positive.4 
  • People diagnosed with stomach cancer can have their tumor tested to determine its HER2 status.4
    • There are distinct differences in HER2 testing for gastric and breast cancers that may impact a HER2-positive or HER2-negative diagnosis.