Tests for stomach cancer

Checking for stomach cancer usually involves a number of tests. The diagnostic tests you have for stomach cancer will depend on your specific situation and may include:

  • an endoscopy and biopsy to find stomach cancer
  • further tests to see if the cancer has spread (metastasised).

Waiting for the test results can be a stressful time. It may help to talk to a friend or family member, or a health professional. You can also call Cancer Council 13 11 20

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Endoscopy and biopsy

An endoscopy (also called a gastroscopy, oesophagoscopy or upper endoscopy) allows your doctor to look inside your digestive tract to examine the lining. This procedure is usually performed as day surgery.

Most people are told not to eat or drink (fast) for 6 hours before an endoscopy. In some cases, you can continue drinking clear fluids until two hours before the procedure. Your doctor will advise you about this. Before the procedure, your throat may be sprayed with a local anaesthetic, which can taste very bitter, and you will usually be given a sedative into a vein to ensure you are comfortable during the procedure. A long, flexible tube with a light and small camera on the end (endoscope) will then be passed into your mouth, down your throat and oesophagus, and into your stomach and small bowel.

If the doctor sees any suspicious-looking areas, they may remove a small amount of tissue from the stomach or oesophageal lining. This is known as a biopsy. A pathologist will examine the tissue under a microscope to check for signs of disease. Biopsy results are usually available within 5–7 days. This waiting period can be an anxious time. It may help to talk to a supportive friend, relative or health professional about how you are feeling.

An endoscopy takes about 15 minutes. You will need to have someone take you home after the procedure, as you may feel drowsy or weak. You could have a sore throat afterwards and feel a little bloated. Endoscopies have some risks, such as bleeding or getting a small tear or hole in the stomach. These risks are very uncommon. Your doctor should explain all the risks before asking you to agree (consent) to the procedure.


Click on the icon below to download a PDF booklet on stomach and oesophageal cancers


    Understanding Stomach and Oesophageal Cancers

  • 786 kB

Printed copies are available for free - Call 13 11 20 to order

Instructions for downloading and reading EPUB files

Apple devices

The iBooks application must be installed on your Apple device before you can read the EPUB.
Different ways to download an EPUB file to your Apple device:

  • email EPUB files to yourself and transfer the attachment to iBooks.
  • copy EPUB files into DropBox (or a similar service) and use the DropBox app to send them to iBooks.
  • open EPUB files directly from Mobile Safari and open them in iBooks, where they are saved automatically by downloading the EPUB from the website.

Need more help? Visit: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4059

Kobo

To download an EPUB file to your Kobo from a Windows computer:

  • download and save the EPUB directly onto your desktop.
  • connect your Kobo to your computer using the USB cable and tap “Connect” on your eReader.
  • select “Open folder to view files” to view the contents of your Kobo.
  • navigate to where you have stored your EPUB file in “Finder”, in documents or downloads, and drag and drop it into the Kobo window. You can now disconnect your Kobo to read the eBook.

To download an EPUB to your Kobo from a Mac:

  • download and save the EPUB directly onto your desktop.
  • connect your Kobo to your computer using the USB cable and tap “Connect” on your eReader.
  • open your “Finder” application.
  • select “Kobo eReader” from the listed devices to view the contents of your Kobo.
  • navigate to where you have stored your EPUB file in “Finder”, probably in documents or downloads, and drag and drop it into the Kobo window. You can now disconnect your Kobo to read the eBook.

Turn on your Kobo and your EPUB will be located in “eBooks”, while a PDF will be located in “Documents”.
Need more information? Visit: http://www.kobo.com/help/koboaura/response/?id=3784&type=3

Sony Reader

To download an EPUB file on your Sony Reader™:

  • ensure you have already installed the Reader™ Library for PC/Mac software
  • select the eBook you want from our website and click the link to download it.
  • connect the Reader™ to your computer.
  • open the Reader™ Library software and click “Library” in the left-hand pane and select the eBook to view it.

Need more help? Visit: https://au.readerstore.sony.com/apps_and_devices/

Amazon Kindle 2nd Generation devices

EPUB files can’t be read on the Amazon Kindle™. However, like most eReaders, Kindle™ 2nd Generation devices are able to display PDFs. We recommend that you download the PDF version of this booklet if you would like to read it on a Kindle™.
To transfer a PDF to your Kindle™ via USB cable from your computer or Mac:

  • download the PDF directly onto your computer.
  • connect the USB cable to your computer’s USB port, and the micro USB end of the cable to your Kindle™. Note: the Kindle™ won’t be available as a reading device while it is connected to your computer until it has been disconnected.
  • open the Kindle™ drive and several folders will appear inside. The “Documents” folder is where you will need to copy or drag the PDF to.
  • safely eject your Kindle™ from your computer and unplug the USB cable. Your content will appear on the Home Screen.

Kindle also provides a Kindle Personal Documents Service that allows users to send documents as an attachment directly to your eReader. For more information on this service, visit http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=help_search_1-1?ie=UTF8&nodeId=200767340&qid=1395967989&sr=1-1
For more information on accessing a PDF on your Kindle™, visit www.amazon.com/manageyourkindle, log in to your account and click on Personal Document Settings.
Need more help? Visit https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=200375630

Android and PC

You can also download and open eBooks on Android devices and PCs with appropriate apps or software installed. Suitable eReader apps for Android include Google Play Books, FBReader and Moon+ Reader. Suitable software for PCs include Calibre and Adobe Digital Editions.


This information was last reviewed in October 2019
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