Two percent to fifteen percent of patients with gastric cancer (GC) are younger than 45 years of age and there has been an increase in the relative proportion of young age GC compared with older age GC, especially in young females. The question of whether young age GC is different from that of older patients has been raised but remains unresolved.
A research article published on January 14, 2010 the World Journal of Gastroenterology
addresses this question. The research team from South Korea enrolled, retrospectively, a total of 3242 patients with GC between 18 and 45 years of age and 3000 sex- and age-matched controls.
Their study demonstrated that the epidemiologic characteristics including risk factors of young age GC were different according to age and gender. Hormonal factors were more commonly associated with females, particularly in the younger age group, whereas environmental factors were more commonly associated with males, particularly in the older age group.
This knowledge may help to clarify the exact pathophysiology of young age GC and help devise an appropriate treatment approach.