- Hereditary Diffuse Gastric Cancer (HDGC) is caused by inherited mutations in the E-cadherin gene (CDH1).
- Mutation carriers have a 70% lifetime risk of developing stomach cancer.
- Female carriers have an additional 30-40% risk of developing breast cancer (lobular type).
- It is recommended that mutation carriers have their stomachs removed after the age of about 20 years to eliminate further risk. Otherwise, annual endoscopic surveillance is recommended, although this comes with some risk.
- Most people return to largely normal lives 6-12 months after stomach removal (gastrectomy).
- Annual MRIs are recommended for breast cancer surveillance.
HDGC in New Zealand
- There are over 500 known HDGC families worldwide, with new families being identified each week.
- There are approximately 25 known HDGC families in New Zealand.
- HDGC was first identified in New Zealand in a research partnership between an affected whānau from the Bay of Plenty and the University of Otago.
HDGC Management Guidelines
There is a wealth of information to be found on Diffuse Gastric Cancer specific websites including:
A pamphlet for NZ based patients: