One hundred twenty-nine adenocarcinomas involving the esophagus and/or gastric cardia differed significantly from 212 cancers of the rest of the stomach as follows: male-female ratio, 6:1 versus 2:1, birth outside Canada, US or UK, 12% versus 34%; parent or sibling with gastric cancer, 5% versus 13%; previous duodenal ulcer, 23% versus 9%; chronic reflux symptoms, 25% versus 3%; hiatal hernia, 51% versus 11%. Of the 129 esophagocardia cancers, 24 involved the esophagus alone, 48 the cardia and esophagus, 33 the cardia alone or cardia and fundus, and 24 the upper stomach and lower esophagus extensively. Thirty-four were associated with Barrett's esophagus. The 72 patients with involvement of both the upper stomach and lower esophagus (48 cardia and esophagus, 24 extensive) were identical with the esophagocardia group as a whole. The 24 patients with esophageal cancer and the 34 with Barrett's epithelium were the same clinically as the whole esophagocardia group except more had chronic reflux and hiatal hernia. The 33 patients with cancer confined to the cardia or cardia and fundus resembled the whole esophagocardia group but did not have Barrett's esophagus. Adenocarcinoma of the esophagocardia region is probably a different disease from cancer of the rest of the stomach.