South Korean researchers have found that Gastric cancer patients should be aware they may have a higher risk of osteoporosis.
Dr. Jong-Inn Lee led a research team at the Korea Cancer Center Hospital in Seoul that found the prevalence of osteoporosis in patients who survived after gastrectomy — a partial or full surgical removal of the stomach — was 38.3 percent and the vertebral deformity rate was 46.6 percent. More than 45 percent of the study patients complained of bone-related pain.
The study advises all gastric cancer patients who have anemia, back pain or are age 60 or older should be screened for osteoporosis regardless of tumor stage and type of reconstruction.
The survival rate for gastric cancer which happens to be one of the most common cancers in the world, has not been very good, but it has risen for those who receive early diagnosis and aggressive surgical intervention.
The study authors theorize a possible reason for the high prevalence of osteoporosis is that the average age of gastrectomy is about 60 years and being older than 64 years is an independent predicting factor of osteoporosis.
Another reason may be that gastrectomy might affect calcium and other nutrient absorption.