Risk Factors For Peptic Ulcers
Lifestyle factors, such as smoking, are a risk factor. Acidic foods and alcohol use change the stomach lining and can make it more susceptible to Helicobacter pylori infection, a known cause of stomach ulcers. Overuse of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , medical conditions such as Crohn’s disease, and a genetic predisposition also may lead to peptic ulcers.
Other common symptoms of a peptic ulcer include:
- Discomfort, bloating
These symptoms are rare, but are more severe and could point to a complication:
- Blood in the stool black and tarry stool
- Fatigue or weakness, which can result from malnutrition or anemia due to small amounts of bleeding from the ulcer
- Unexplained weight loss
Symptoms of peptic ulcers can occur as a result of other conditions, including gastroesophageal reflux disease , chronic dyspepsia, gallbladder disease, liver disease, or a gastrointestinal infection. It’s important to see your healthcare provider to determine what’s at the root of your pain.
Treatment For A Stomach Ulcer
Special diets are now known to have very little impact on the prevention or treatment of stomach ulcers. Treatment options can include:
- medication including antibiotics, to destroy the H. pylori colony, and drugs to help speed the healing process. Different drugs need to be used in combination some of the side effects can include diarrhoea and rashes. Resistance to some of these antibiotics is becoming more common
- subsequent breath tests used to make sure the H. pylori infection has been treated successfully
- changes to existing medication the doses of arthritis medication, aspirin or other anti-inflammatory medication can be altered slightly to reduce their contributing effects on the stomach ulcer.
- reducing acid tablets are available to reduce the acid content in the gastric juices
- lifestyle modifications including quitting cigarettes, since smoking reduces the natural defences in the stomach and impairs the healing process.
Recommended Reading: Best Supplement For Gastric Ulcers In Horses
Signs You May Have A Peptic Ulcer
Peptic ulcers, or stomach ulcers, are breaks or holes in the lining of the stomach. An ulcer in the first part of the intestines is known as a duodenal ulcer. An ulcer in the stomach is known as a gastric ulcer. If you think you may have an ulcer, you should see a gastroenterologist. Gastroenterologists are specialists in the diagnosis and treatment of peptic ulcers. Here are 5 signs you may have a peptic ulcer. 1. Burning pain- The most common peptic ulcer symptom is a burning sensation or gnawing pain in the middle of your abdomen. The pain may come and go for several days or weeks. Even though discomfort may be mild, peptic ulcers can worsen if they arent treated. Taking antacids can relieve the discomfort, but it will keep coming back until the peptic ulcer is treated by a doctor.
2. Nausea- The symptoms of peptic ulcers may include nausea. Nausea is a feeling of sickness with an inclination to vomit. Nausea has many possible causes. Some common causes of nausea include appendicitis, infection, reactions to some medicines, migraines, food poisoning or intestinal blockage.
Recommended Reading: What Is Ulcerative Colitis And How Is It Treated
Stomach Cancer And Other Conditions Associated With H Pylori
H pylori is strongly associated with certain cancers. Some studies have also linked it to a number of non-gastrointestinal illnesses, although the evidence is inconsistent.
Stomach cancer, also called gastric cancer, is the third leading cause of cancer death worldwide. In developing countries, where the rate of H pylori is very high, the risk of stomach cancer is six times higher than in the United States. Evidence now suggests that H pylori may be as carcinogenic to the stomach as cigarette smoke is to the lungs.
Infection with H pylori promotes a precancerous condition called atrophic gastritis. The process most likely starts in childhood. It may lead to cancer through the following steps:
- The stomach becomes chronically inflamed and loses patches of glands that secrete protein and acid.
- New cells replace destroyed cells. But the new cells do not produce enough acid to protect against carcinogens.
- Over time, cancer cells may develop and multiply in the stomach.
Although the evidence is mixed, some research suggests that early elimination of H pylori may reduce the risk of stomach cancer to that of the general population. It is important to follow patients after treatment for a long period of time.
H pylori also is weakly associated with other non-intestinal disorders, including migraine headache, Raynaud disease , and skin disorders such as chronic hives.
What Happens After Treatment
A repeat gastroscopy is usually advised a few weeks after treatment has finished. This is mainly to check that the ulcer has healed. It is also to be doubly certain that the ‘ulcer’ was not due to stomach cancer. If your ulcer was caused by H. pylori then a test is advised to check that the H. pylori infection has gone. This is done at least four weeks after the course of combination therapy has finished.
You May Like: How Do They Treat Ulcerative Colitis
What Is The Treatment For Ulcers
If you have ulcer symptoms, see your doctor. Prompt treatment can prevent excessive bleeding and other complications.
Ulcers are usually diagnosed after an upper GI endoscopy . An endoscope is a long flexible tube with a light and camera on the end. The tube is inserted into your throat, then to the esophagus, stomach, and upper part of the small intestine. Learn how to prepare for an endoscopy here.
Generally performed as an outpatient procedure, it allows the doctor to locate and identify problems in the stomach and upper intestine.
Bleeding ulcers must be addressed quickly, and treatment can start during the initial endoscopy. If bleeding from ulcers is found during the endoscopy, the doctor can:
- inject medication directly
- cauterize the ulcer to stop the bleeding
- clamp off the bleeding vessel
If you have an ulcer, youll be tested for H. pylori. This can be done using a tissue sample taken during the endoscopy. It can also be accomplished with noninvasive tests such as a stool sample or breath test.
If you have the infection, antibiotics and other drugs can help fight the bacteria and ease symptoms. To be certain you get rid of it, you must finish taking the medication as directed, even if your symptoms stop.
If your ulcers are the result of taking too many NSAIDs, work with your doctor to find another medication to treat pain.
Over-the-counter antacids sometimes relieve symptoms. Ask your doctor if its okay to take antacids.
How Is A Peptic Ulcer Treated
Some peptic ulcers heal on their own. But if you donât treat them, the ulcers tend to come back.
They can erode the blood vessel wall in your stomach or small intestine. The ulcers also can eat a hole through the lining and get infected. Or they can cause swelling, which may block food from moving from your stomach into your small intestine.
If H. pylori is the culprit, your doctor may prescribe a mix of antibiotics to kill it. If aspirin and other NSAIDs are behind the ulcer, you may need to cut down on them, stop taking them altogether, or switch to another pain reliever.
Your doctor may also give you antacids to fight stomach acid, or prescribe medicine to lessen the acid your body makes. Prescription drugs called cytoprotective agents can help protect the lining of the stomach or small intestine so the ulcer can heal.
Read Also: How To Stop Ulcerative Colitis Bleeding
When To Seek Urgent Medical Advice
Symptoms can develop if a stomach ulcer suddenly causes serious complications, such as internal bleeding. These include:
- vomiting blood the blood can appear bright red or have a dark brown, grainy appearance that is similar to coffee grounds
- passing black tar-like stools
- a sudden, sharp pain in your stomach that gets steadily worse and worse and does not improve
If you experience any of these symptoms, you should contact your doctor immediately. If this is not possible, contact your local out-of-hours service.
Blood supplies oxygen to the body and removes carbon dioxide. It is pumped around the body by the heart.
Blood vessels are the tubes in which blood travels to and from parts of the body. The three main types of blood vessels are veins, arteries and capillaries.
Heartburn, also known as indigestion, is a painful, burning discomfort felt in the chest, usually after eating.
Loss of appetite is when you do not feel hungry or want to eat.
Nausea is when you feel like you are going to be sick.
Pain is an unpleasant physical or emotional feeling that your body produces as a warning sign that it has been damaged.
The sac-like organ of the digestive system. It helps digest food by churning it and mixing it with acids to break it down into smaller pieces.
Stool is the solid waste matter that is passed from the body as a bowel movement.
An ulcer is a sore break in the skin, or on the inside lining of the body.
What Are The Complications Of Peptic Ulcers
With modern treatment, people with ulcer disease can lead normal lives without lifestyle changes or dietary restrictions. Cigarettesmokers have been found to have more complications from ulcers and treatment failure.
Eradication of the bacteria H. pylori not only heals ulcers but also prevents the recurrence of ulcer disease.
Patients with ulcers generally function quite comfortably.
Some ulcers probably heal even without medications . Therefore, the major problems resulting from ulcers are related to ulcer complications. Complications include
- obstruction of emptying of the passage of food.
Patients with bleeding ulcers may report
- a sense of light-headedness or ay even pass out upon standing ,
- and vomiting blood . Initial treatment involves rapid replacement of fluids intravenously.
Patients with persistent or severe bleeding may require blood transfusions. An endoscopy is performed to establish the site of bleeding and to stop active ulcer bleeding with the aid of specialized endoscopic instruments.
Duodenum A peptic ulcer that forms in the narrow outlet from the stomach, it can obstruct the flow of stomach contents into the duodenum. Duodenal ulcers sometimes also may obstruct the flow of intestinal contents.
Patients with obstruction often report
Recommended Reading: How To Heal An Ulcer In The Esophagus
What Foods Soothe A Peptic Ulcer
High-fiber foods and those high in vitamin A may help soothe a persons stomach. Some examples include oats, barley, apples, and sweet potatoes.
- Levenstein, S., et al. . Psychological stress increases risk for peptic ulcer, regardless of Helicobacter pylori infection or use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs .
What Is The Difference Between Peptic Ulcer And Gastric Ulcer
4.9/5Ulcerspeptic ulcerstomachpeptic ulcer in the stomachgastric ulcerduodenal ulcerpeptic ulcerin the
Keeping this in consideration, what is the difference between gastric ulcer and duodenal ulcer?
Gastric and duodenal ulcers are peptic ulcers, which are open sores in the lining of the digestive tract. Gastric ulcers form in the lining of the stomach. Duodenal ulcers develop in the lining of the duodenum, which is the upper part of the small intestine.
Similarly, what causes gastric ulcer? Stomach ulcer causesStomach ulcers are usually caused by Helicobacter pylori bacteria or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs . These can break down the stomachs defence against the acid it produces to digest food. The stomach lining then becomes damaged causing an ulcer to form.
Keeping this in consideration, what is the difference between peptic ulcer and gastritis?
Gastritis is irritation and inflammation of the stomach lining. An ulcer is a deeper open sore in the lining of the stomach. It may also occur in the first part of the small intestine . The causes and symptoms of gastritis and ulcers are very similar.
Which type of ulcer is relieved by food?
You May Like: Ulcerative Colitis Flare Up Length
Read Also: Repositioning To Prevent Pressure Ulcers
How Do Tumors From Zes Cause Peptic Ulcers
Zollinger-Ellison syndrome is a rare disorder that happens when one or more tumors form in your pancreas and duodenum. The tumors release large amounts of gastrin, a hormone that causes your stomach to produce large amounts of acid. The extra acid causes peptic ulcers to form in your duodenum and in the upper intestine.
How Do H Pylori Cause Ulcers
Although many people naturally carry H. pylori bacteria, it is not clear why these bacteria only cause ulcers in some people.
H. pylori spread through food and water. They live in the mucus that coats the lining of the stomach and duodenum, and they produce urease, an enzyme that neutralizes stomach acid by making it less acidic.
To compensate for this, the stomach produces more acid, and this irritates the stomach lining. The bacteria also weaken the defense system of the stomach and cause inflammation.
Patients with peptic ulcers caused by H. pylori antibiotic treatment to remove the bacterium from the stomach and prevent them from returning.
You May Like: Can Stress Cause Flare Up Ulcerative Colitis
Prevention Of Peptic Ulcers
Using alternatives to NSAIDs, like acetaminophen, to relieve pain can help prevent peptic ulcers. If you need to use an NSAID, opt for the lowest dose and take it with a meal.
Peptic ulcers caused by infection with Helicobacter pylori are not usually preventable, but good hygiene such as washing your hands thoroughly before eating and after using the bathroom may help limit the spread.
How Are Stomach Ulcers Diagnosed
Diagnosis and treatment will depend on your symptoms and the severity of your ulcer. To diagnose a stomach ulcer, your doctor will review your medical history along with your symptoms and any prescription or over-the-counter medications youre taking.
To rule out H. pylori infection, a blood, stool, or breath test may be ordered. With a breath test, youll be instructed to drink a clear liquid and breathe into a bag, which is then sealed. If H. pylori is present, the breath sample will contain higher-than-normal levels of carbon dioxide.
Other tests and procedures used to diagnose stomach ulcers include:
- Barium swallow: You drink a thick white liquid that coats your upper gastrointestinal tract and helps your doctor see your stomach and small intestine on X-rays.
- Endoscopy : A thin, lighted tube is inserted through your mouth and into the stomach and the first part of the small intestine. This test is used to look for ulcers, bleeding, and any tissue that looks abnormal.
- Endoscopic biopsy: A piece of stomach tissue is removed so it can be analyzed in a lab.
Tumor necrosis factor inhibitors aid in reducing inflammation. However, they can produce the following GI symptoms:
on the cause of the complications. For example, in order to treat a persons amyloidosis, doctors must treat its underlying cause, which in this case is RA.
However, some RA treatments can cause GI symptoms.
A person can discuss ways to reduce GI symptoms with a rheumatologist.
You May Like: Best Diet For Ulcerative Colitis Flare Up
How Will Your Doctor Diagnose Ulcers
Your doctor will start by asking about your medical history and symptoms. Let your doctor know when and where you most often have symptoms.
Gastric and duodenal ulcers can cause pain in different parts of your abdomen. A variety of tests will usually be recommended since abdominal pain has many causes.
If your doctor thinks H. pylori may be the source of your symptoms, the following tests can confirm or rule out this possibility:
- A blood test. The presence of certain infection-fighting cells could mean you have an H. pylori infection.
- A stool antigen test. In this test, a stool sample is sent to a lab for testing. The test looks for certain proteins in the stool related to H. pylori.
- A urea breath test. A urea breath test involves swallowing a pill that contains a special formulation of urea. You breathe into a collection bag before and after swallowing the pill, and then your carbon dioxide levels are measured. When H. pylori is present, the urea in the pill is broken down into a certain type of carbon dioxide that can be detected.
Also Check: Causes Of Bleeding Ulcers In Stomach
What Is The Treatment For Peptic Ulcers
The choice of treatment depends on whether or not the ulcer is caused by infection with H pylori. Correct diagnosis is key to whether a treatment works or not. If the bacteria are the cause, treatment focuses on killing the infection. Regardless of whether the bacteria are the cause, reducing acid in the stomach is another important focus of treatment.
The following treatments are recommended for ulcers:
- Lifestyle changes: Quit smoking, avoid alcohol, aspirin, and NSAIDs
- Acid-blocking medications
- Medications that protect the lining of the stomach and duodenum
- Triple-therapy or dual-therapy regimens for ulcers caused by H pylori
No single medication works to get rid of H pylori infection. Two combinations have been found that work well in most people.
These treatments are generally given for two weeks.
Once H pylori bacteria are eradicated from a persons digestive tract, usually it will not come back. The ulcers usually heal completely and do not return.
Treatment for bleeding ulcers depends on the severity of blood loss and includes:
It is important to remember that treatment may not work if the diagnosis is not correct. If the doctor diagnoses an ulcer, it is important to determine whether the ulcer is caused by infection with H pylori.
Also Check: What’s The Signs Of An Ulcer
Treating Helicobacter Pylori Infection
If your stomach ulcerâs caused by a Helicobacter pylori bacterial infection, youâll be given:
- a course of antibiotics
- a medication called a proton pump inhibitor
This is also recommended if itâs thought your stomach ulcerâs caused by a combination of an H. pylori infection and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs .
Also Check: Why Does My Stomach Get Bloated Every Time I Eat