The American Journal of Digestive Diseases

, Volume 6, Issue 6, pp 554–569 | Cite as

Precancerous disease of the gastrointestinal tract

  • Charles A. Flood
Current Gastroenterology


The gastrointestinal disorders regarded as potentially premalignant are the benign epithelial growths and the inflammatory and degenerative diseases of the mucous membrane. The majority of large-bowel carcinomata appear to start as adenomatous polyps. Chronic ulcerative colitis also appears to predispose to development of malignancy.

Probably only a small proportion of gastric carcinomata are preceded by adenomatous polyps or benign gastric ulcer. Chronic inflammatory gastritis or gastric atrophy may precede the development of carcinoma in many cases.

Hereditary factors play a role in the pathogenesis of colonic polyps, and there is evidence suggesting that heredity may at times predetermine gastric atrophy. Other etiologic factors in the development of carcinomatous precursors in the gastrointestinal tract remain obscure.


Gastrointestinal Tract Ulcerative Colitis Gastritis Gastric Carcinoma Gastric Ulcer 
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Copyright information

© Paul B. Hoeber, Inc., Medical Division of Harper & Brothers 1961

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charles A. Flood
    • 1
  1. 1.From the Department of Medicine, College of Physicians and SurgeonsColumbia University and The Presbyterian HospitalNew York

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