The lymphatic system

The lymphatic system is part of the immune system – the body’s natural defence against infection and disease. It’s made up of different organs including the spleen and lymph nodes (glands). There are lymph nodes throughout the body and they are connected by a network of tiny lymphatic tubes (ducts).

The lymphatic system has two main roles: 

  • it helps to protect the body from infection 
  • it drains fluid from the tissues.

Stomach cancer can sometimes spread to the lymph nodes close to the stomach. If you have surgery to remove stomach cancer, your surgeon will usually remove some lymph nodes as well.

The stomach and surrounding lymph nodes
The stomach and surrounding lymph nodes

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Back to Understanding stomach cancer

What is cancer?

There are more than 200 different kinds of cancer, each with its own name and treatment.

The stomach

The stomach stores food and breaks it down so our bodies can absorb the nutrients we need for energy.

Types of stomach cancer

The most common type of stomach cancer is adenocarcinoma. We also have information on less common cancers of the stomach.