Medical Definition of Gastrointestinal stromal tumor

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Gastrointestinal stromal tumor: A type of tumor that usually begins in cells in the wall of the gastrointestinal tract. It can be benign or malignant. Abbreviated GIST. Malignant GISTs can occur from the esophagus to the rectum, but occur most commonly in the stomach and small intestine. Treatment for GIST includes STI571 (Gleevec), the first approved drug to directly turn off the signal of a protein known to cause a cancer.

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Last Editorial Review: 1/24/2017

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