BACKGROUND Positive peritoneal wash cytology with no peritoneal metastasis (CY1P0) is a special type of distant gastric cancer metastasis, which describes a patient with positive peritoneal lavage cytology, but no definitive peritoneal metastasis, and there are no widely accepted treatment guidelines. We enrolled 48 primary CY1P0 gastric cancer patients treated by radical gastrectomy in this study. Our study illustrated the efficacy of radical gastrectomy for CY1P0 gastric cancer patients, and suggested that the pathological N factor and vascular invasion were significant independent risk factors for overall survival (OS). AIM To assess the survival of CY1P0 gastric cancer patient post-radical gastrectomy, and to identify factors associated with long-term prognosis. METHODS Our study included 48 patients with primary CY1P0 gastric cancer who had radical gastrectomies at the Cancer Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Beijing, China between 2013 and 2018. R0 resection was achieved in all 48 patients. Twelve patients received neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Thirty patients received adjuvant chemotherapy and four received adjuvant chemoradiotherapy. OS statistics were available for 48 patients. Follow-up continued through March 2020. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed using a Cox proportional hazards model to identify prognostic factors. RESULTS Median OS was 22.0 mo (95% confidence interval: 13.366-30.634 mo) post-surgery. Univariate analyses demonstrated that tumor site ( P = 0.021), pathological N factor ( P = 0.001), pathological T factor ( P = 0.028), vascular invasion ( P = 0.046), and the level of CA199 prior to initiating therapy ( P = 0.002) were significant risk factors for OS. Multivariate analyses demonstrated that pathological N factor ( P = 0.001) and vascular invasion ( P = 0.031) were significant independent risk factors for OS. CONCLUSION This study suggested that radical gastrectomy may be efficient for CY1P0 gastric cancer patient post-radical gastrectomy and the pathological N factor and vascular invasion are significant independent risk factors for OS.