The International Gastric Cancer Prevention and Treatment Consensus unfolded Tuesday at National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH) on the World Stomach Day with doctors and scholars from around the world in attendance. Wu Chun-Ying, head of the Taiwan Microbiota Consortium, pointed out that World Stomach Day aims to raise awareness of stomach diseases.
According to medical authorities, Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), a type of bacteria, is one of the major factors leading to stomach cancer and peptic ulcer disease (PUD). If H. pylori were detected earlier and removed, the chances of getting cancer could, therefore, be significantly reduced.
Stomach cancer is the third most common cause of death from cancer. In Taiwan, stomach cancer ranked seventh in cancer mortality in 2018.
With the two-day discussions hosted by Ming-Shiang Wu, Yi-Chia Lee, and Jyh-Ming Liou, the NTUH and some overseas scholars have observed that 80 percent of stomach cancer cases have resulted from the infection of H. pylori. By extension, the early removal of H. pylori could considerably decrease the risk of getting gastric cancer, they said.
In addition, Dr. Jyh-Ming Liou, who is specialized in gastroenterology at the NTUH, said that the infection of H. pylori is caused by a fecal-oral transmission during diarrhea for instance. The treatment has a success rate of H. pylori removal that can reach up to 90 percent, Liou said.
Still, the treatment could cause slight changes in human gastrointestinal microbiota and also increase in the proportion of drug-resistant Escherichia coli in patients’ microflora. The number of drug-resistant Escherichia coli and intestinal microflora would restore to normal after two months of recovery.
Dr. Liou said that there is self-pay H. pylori screening, which can identify 90 percent of cases that are suspected of having H. pylori.