CANCER TYPES

Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumors (GIST)

About Gastrointestinal Tumors

A gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) is a type of soft-tissue sarcoma. While they can appear anywhere in the gastrointestinal tract, they are most commonly found in the small intestine and the stomach. GISTs start in certain nerve cells in the lining of the digestive system. These cells are part of the autonomic nervous system and control various digestive processes, like moving food through the GI tract.

Gastrointestinal tumors are more common in those between the ages of 50 and 70, almost never occurring in people younger than 40. However, they can still potentially happen in people of any age.

Causes and Risk Factors

Much like other forms of cancer, gastrointestinal tumors are caused by mutations to your DNA that result in cancer cells growing out of control. This eventually results in growths, or tumors, that may spread to other parts of the body. The exact cause of this mutation is not currently known or understood. 

While heredity may play a role in developing cancer cells in the GI tract, most GISTs are sporadic, meaning that they are not inherited. Certain inherited genetic syndromes may contribute to your risk of developing GISTs. Primary familial GIST syndrome leads to an increased risk of gastrointestinal tumors and may result in GISTs developing at a younger age than usual. Carney-Stratakis syndrome and neurofibromatosis type 1 may also increase the risk of developing gastrointestinal tumors.

There are otherwise very few known risk factors for gastrointestinal tumors. As mentioned, age may play a role as gastrointestinal tumors are more common in people older than the age of 50.

Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging

Smaller gastrointestinal tumors generally cause no symptoms and may grow so slowly that they don’t present any serious effects. Larger GISTs are usually noticeable when a patient vomits blood or has blood in their stool. Other common signs and symptoms of gastrointestinal tumors include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • A noticeable growth in the abdomen
  • Anemia
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Unintended weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Problems with swallowing

If you feel like you, or a loved one you know, is experiencing any other these symptoms, please contact your trusted physician who can diagnose this disease promptly. 

Diagnosing gastrointestinal tumors starts with questions about your medical history and a general physical exam to check for growths in the abdomen. From there, your doctor may perform imaging scans, like a CT scan or endoscopy, to get a better visual of your gastrointestinal tract. Your doctor may also order a biopsy, which is the best way to know for sure if an abnormal area is a GIST.

Following a positive diagnosis, the doctor will proceed to the staging process. The stage determines if the cancer has spread to other parts of the body and helps the doctor determine the best course of action. Staging for gastrointestinal tumors involves the TNM system along with stages ranging from I to IV. The lower the number, the less the cancer has spread.

About Alternative Treatment for Gastrointestinal Tumors

Though chemotherapy and other typical clinical treatments are common when treating cancer cells, GISTs do not respond to chemotherapy. Therefore, surgery and targeted drug therapies are the main modes of treatment. However, these treatments are physically exhausting and come with a variety of negative side effects. Alternative cancer therapy on the other hand, offers a gentle, effective method for treating cancer without the risk of side effects or harming your immune system.

Immunity Therapy Center is a cancer treatment center dedicated to providing customized alternative treatment plans for gastrointestinal cancer. We work with you one-on-one to develop treatment options and create positive relationships that will support your healing process. We want to help you to fight this disease without the harshness of radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Contact us to learn more and to receive your custom treatment plan. 

Sources:

Therapies we use
November 16, 2019

Dr. Carlos Bautista is a Board Certified Medical Doctor. He received his Medical Degree from Universidad Autónoma de Baja California and has more than 20 years of experience working with Alternative Medicine to treat cancer, autoimmune diseases, chronic degenerative diseases, and infectious diseases. He opened Immunity Therapy Center in 2007 with the goal of providing the highest quality medical care for more than 5,000 patients.

At Immunity Therapy Center, our goal is to provide objective, updated, and research-based information on all health-related topics. This article is based on scientific research and/or other scientific articles. All information has been fact-checked and reviewed by Dr. Carlos Bautista, a Board Certified Medical Doctor at Immunity Therapy Center. All information published on the site must undergo an extensive review process to ensure accuracy. This article contains trusted sources with all references hyperlinked for the reader's visibility.

Customized Care For the Body And The Mind

Discuss Your Custom Alternative Treatment Plan With Our Team Today

Testimonials

Hear from Our Patients

Wesley White

Wesley White

Wesley White of Fort Worth, Texas was diagnosed with an aggressive form of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) with FLT3 mutations. After undergoing many traditional treatments and rounds of chemotherapy, none were successful in fighting off his AML — and he was left with little to no options from doctors. His wife, April, had heard of a […]

Read Full Story

Jack Conkey

Jack Conkey

Jack was diagnosed with Stage 4 prostate cancer and, as a result, was living his life in tremendous amounts of pain. It was Jack’s third time getting diagnosed with prostate cancer. Jack’s conventional doctor had put him through chemotherapy and other treatments but had begun to give up, telling Jack that his days were numbered. […]

Read Full Story

Maria Petulla

Maria Petulla

Maria Petulla was diagnosed with Stage 4 breast cancer. Maria’s life was affected by the cancer; she became partially disabled and was living her life in a tremendous amount of pain. The cancer was taking over her life. After waking up one day and feeling the pain spread to her face, Maria knew that she […]

Read Full Story

Robert Gray

Robert Gray from Ontario, Canada has been battling stage 4 neuroendocrine carcinoid cancer. He came to ITC looking for a solution to shrink and eliminate his tumors. He found a kind and caring team of doctors at ITC that could focus on his case. Dr. Bautista brought knowledge and understanding to his case and helped […]

Read Full Story

Peter Richardson

Peter Richardson

Peter Richardson was having significantly increasing pain in his stomach earlier in February. Following doctors orders for treating constipation, Peter took laxatives and pain killers for 5 months, but nothing was helping. When he went back to the doctor a second time they did a CT scan and found a large mass in his abdomen […]

Read Full Story

Pamela Carrillo

Pamela Carrillo

In 2015, Pamela was diagnosed with Stage 2 Breast Cancer that escalated into Stage Four Breast Cancer. Along with her cancer, she also was dealing with infection and swelling on her chest and arm. After hearing about the success of integrative medicine over a conventional method, she knew that she wanted to start her journey […]

Read Full Story

Debbie Halper

Debbie Halper

“The Immunity Therapy Center Saved My Life and I Hope they Can Help You Too” On March 14th Debbie was diagnosed with a rare type of Ampullary and Liver Cancer. Her doctors told her that her diagnosis was essentially a death sentence. After some extensive research, Debbie discovered ITC online and decided it was worth […]

Read Full Story

Marie Dueck

Marie Dueck

“The nurses… prayed with us during hard times.” Marie started experiencing pain in her stomach. When she visited her doctor in Belize, he prescribed medicine and said she should feel better in two weeks. Instead, she felt worse. She went to Mexico for more tests and was diagnosed with stomach cancer. Through research and asking friends […]

Read Full Story

Adrianne Mohnhaupt

Adrianne Mohnhaupt

Adrianne Mohnhaupt dealt with an Ovarian Cancer scare back in 2015 where her doctors found a 37 centimeter tumor, the size of a football. She immediately had it surgically removed and thankfully it was benign. Every six months she continued her CA-125 and they were coming back normal…until two and a half months ago. “I […]

Read Full Story

Rick Lee Scott

Rick Lee Scott

“I’ve never been treated so well in a medical facility in my life.” When Rick was first diagnosed with bladder cancer, it filled 75% of his bladder.  He was given no hope from other doctors, except to have his entire bladder surgically removed.  When he arrived at Immunity Therapy Center, he was very ill and […]

Read Full Story

Discuss Your Alternative Cancer Treatment Options

Please fill out this confidential form and your Patient Advocate will contact you promptly to discuss a treatment plan.