Medicine: Stomach Wrinkles

Wrinkles (rugae) cover the entire lining of the stomach. They all run parallel to the long axis of the stomach from the cardiac end where fresh food comes in to the pyloric end where digested food goes out into the intestines. Pathologists notice that every ulcer or cancer of the stomach always distorts the neat parallelism of the wrinkles. But they notice it only after the patient is dead and the autopsist has done his work. If x-ray pictures had shown the irregular wrinkles, the doctor might have saved the patient before it was...