The first stage of stomach cancer is referred to as Stage 0. This is basically the initial stage of cancer. The cancer is not only localised in this stage, but is yet to cause serious damage. Only the innermost layer of the stomach wall is infected. Detecting stomach cancer when it is still Stage 0 and getting appropriate treatment can help in saving the patient from what is originally a looming death.
The next stage of stomach cancer is called Stage I. This stage is slightly more understand than the previous stage. There are two things that can happen during this stage. The first of these is that the cancer spreads from the inner most layer of the stomach to the second or even third layer. However, it does not spread to the lymph nodes that are close to the area infected by cancer. The other thing that could happen during this stage is that the cancer has spread to the second layer of the stomach, as well as the lymph nodes close to the location of cancer.
The next stage, Stage II, is even more advanced than the second stage. In this stage, the condition of the patient becomes even more critical because of the three conditions that can be found in the patient. One condition is that the cancer reaches the second layer of the stomach wall and spreads to lymph nodes even if they are a bit far away from the location of cancer. Another scenario is that the cancer is in the muscle layer and spread to the lymph nodes close to the location of cancer.
In the next stage, i.e. Stage III, the patient becomes even more critical as the one of the three things happen. Cancer reaches the third layer of the stomach and spreads to the lymph nodes even if they are at a distance from the location of the tumor, or it all affects all four layers of the stomach and spreads to either nearby lymph nodes or lymph nodes that are a bit far away. The third condition that can be observed in Stage III is that the cancer affects all four layers of the stomach and also spreads to nearby tissues.
Stage IV is the final stage of stomach cancer. The cancer spreads to nearby tissues, lymph nodes and other parts of the body.