What Is A Stomach Ulcer
The inner lining of the stomach is made up of protective tissue called the mucosa, which protects the underlying tissues from acidic stomach contents. Any break or sore in this mucus membrane layer is called a stomach ulcer or peptic ulcer.
- Duodenal ulcers: Ulcers in the first part of the small bowel
- Esophageal ulcers: Ulcers that develop in the esophagus
Pregnancy And Breastfeeding While Taking Eliquis
Its not known if Eliquis is safe to take during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.
If used during pregnancy, Eliquis may increase the risk of bleeding during pregnancy and delivery. It may also increase the risk of bleeding in the baby, both in the womb and after birth.
Its not known if Eliquis can pass into breast milk. However, if it does, it could cause side effects, including serious bleeding, in a child whos breastfed.
If youre pregnant or breastfeeding, or planning for either, talk with your doctor about your treatment options. Your doctor will likely recommend a medication other than Eliquis.
Note that if youre taking Eliquis when you go into labor, you may have a risk of spinal blood clots if you receive epidural anesthesia for pain relief. Eliquis has a
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How Are Peptic Ulcers Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will look at your past health and give you a physical exam. You may also have some tests.
Imaging tests used to diagnose ulcers include:
- Upper GI series or barium swallow. This test looks at the organs of the top part of your digestive system. It checks your food pipe , stomach, and the first part of the small intestine . You will swallow a metallic fluid called barium. Barium coats the organs so that they can be seen on an X-ray.
- Upper endoscopy or EGD . This test looks at the lining of your esophagus, stomach, and duodenum. It uses a thin lighted tube called an endoscope. The tube has a camera at one end. The tube is put into your mouth and throat. Then it goes into your esophagus, stomach, and duodenum. Your health care provider can see the inside of these organs. A small tissue sample can be taken. This can be checked for H. pylori.
You may also have the following lab tests to see if you have an H. pylori infection:
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When Should You Call Or See A Doctor
If you think you have a stomach ulcer, call your doctor. Together you can discuss your symptoms and treatment options. If you dont already have a physician, you can use the Healthline FindCare tool to find a provider near you.
Its important to get a stomach ulcer taken care of because without treatment, ulcers and H. pylori can cause:
- bleeding from the ulcer site that can become life-threatening
- penetration, which occurs when the ulcer goes through the wall of the digestive tract and into another organ, such as the pancreas
- perforation, which occurs when the ulcer creates a hole in the wall of the digestive tract
- obstruction in the digestive tract, which is due to swelling of inflamed tissues
- stomach cancer, specifically
Symptoms of these complications can include those listed below. If you have any of these symptoms, be sure to call you doctor right away:
Stomach Ulcers: How Dangerous Are They
Ulcers generally are sores that are slow in healing or keep returning after it has been treated. They can appear both on the inside as well as outside of the body taking different forms, depending on the conditions the body was exposed.
Injuries or diseases, even infections can cause you to have an ulcer. Their appearance depends on whether it is on the outside or inside your body and the cause behind you getting them. While some may not require much attention and go away on their own, others can create severe health problems if you dont treat them in time.
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Honey Can Help Prevent Ulcers
Modern medicine has finally caught on to a folk remedy thats been used for centuries. Because honey fights bacteria, hospitals and clinics sometimes apply it to burns and other open wounds. For the same reason that it can help heal a skin ulcer, honey may help thwart H. pylori. Researchers from New Zealand tested honey made from the nectar of the Manuka flower on bacteria from biopsies of gastric ulcers and found that the honey inhibited bacterial growth. Other researchers have been successful in using other types of honey to halt the growth of H. pylori.
Recommended dose: Start by taking a tablespoon of honey in the morning and at night to calm a fiery belly. Spread it on toast or a cracker to keep it in the stomach longer. Because H. pylori is slow growing, be sure to keep up your honey regimen until ulcer symptoms are long gone.
What Is The Cause Of Peptic Ulcers
When you eat, your stomach produces hydrochloric acid and an enzyme called pepsin to digest the food.
- The food is partially digested in the stomach and then moves on to the duodenum to continue the process.
- Peptic ulcers occur when the acid and enzyme overcome the defense mechanisms of the gastrointestinal tract and erode the mucosal wall.
In the past it was thought that ulcers were caused by lifestyle factors such as eating habits, cigarettesmoking, and stress.
- Now it is understood that people with ulcers have an imbalance between acid and pepsin coupled with the digestive tractâs inability to protect itself from these harsh substances.
- Research done in the 1980s showed that some ulcers are caused by infection with a bacterium named Helicobacter pylori, usually called H pylori.
- Not everyone who gets an ulcer is infected with H pylori. Aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can cause ulcers if taken regularly.
Some types of medical therapy can contribute to ulcer formation. The following factors can weaken the protective mucosal barrier of the stomach increasing the chances of getting an ulcer and slow the healing of existing ulcers.
- Aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , and newer anti-inflammatory medications
- Radiation therapy:-used for diseases such as cancer
People who take aspirin or other anti-inflammatory medications are at an increased risk even if they do not have H pylori infection.
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How Serious Is A Bleeding Stomach Ulcer
Bleeding is one of the most common complications of a stomach ulcer. Excessive or rapid bleeding from a stomach ulcer can be life-threatening.
Severe blood loss from a bleeding ulcer can cause black or bloody vomit, tarry stools, and low blood pressure and may require urgent hospitalization and a blood transfusion.
Gradual, mild bleeding from a stomach ulcer may go unnoticed. If left untreated, however, it can cause anemia which may lead to:
Consult your doctor if you have any of the above symptoms. Untreated bleeding in the gut can cause serious consequences in the long run.
Diagnosis Of A Stomach Ulcer
Diagnosing a stomach ulcer is done using a range of methods, including:
- Endoscopy a thin flexible tube is threaded down the oesophagus into the stomach under light anaesthesia. The endoscope is fitted with a small camera so the physician can see if there is an ulcer.
- Barium meal a chalky liquid is drunk and an x-ray is performed, showing the stomach lining. These tests are less common nowadays, but may be useful where endoscopy is unavailable.
- Biopsy a small tissue sample is taken during an endoscopy and tested in a laboratory. This biopsy should always be done if a gastric ulcer is found.
- C14 breath test this checks for the presence of H. pylori. The bacteria convert urea into carbon dioxide. The test involves swallowing an amount of radioactive carbon and testing the air exhaled from the lungs. A non-radioactive test can be used for children and pregnant women.
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What To Eat If You Have A Stomach Ulcer
Since H. pylori bacteria is now known to be an important cause of ulcer formation, scientists are exploring what foods may have a role in fighting against an infection.
In addition to taking the antibiotics and acid-blocking medications recommended by your doctor for your ulcer treatment, eating these foods may also be helpful against the ulcer-causing bacteria:
for ulcer treatment. These foods, such as miso, sauerkraut, and kimchi, may prevent reinfection.
Turmeric is currently being studied as a potential treatment for ulcers as well.
Garlic, decaffeinated green tea, and licorice round out the list of things you might want to incorporate in your diet.
How Can I Prevent A Stomach Ulcer From Occurring Or Returning
- Reduce NSAID use, if possible. Consider whether acetaminophen might substitute. If you take NSAIDs for medical reasons, talk to your doctor about reducing your dosage or switching your medication. Your doctor may also prescribe another medicine to take with NSAIDs to protect your stomach lining.
- Reduce other irritants that may contribute to too much stomach acid or erode your stomach lining, including smoking and alcohol use.
- Take an H. pylori breath test to find out if you have an overgrowth of the bacteria.
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Foods To Avoid With Stomach Ulcer
There are certain kinds of foods and drinks that you should exclude from your diet. They include the following:
Alcohol and alcoholic beverages are not any good as you try to recover from stomach ulcers. Alcohol increases the acidity level in the stomach which in turn irritates the stomach lining and worsens the condition. The succinic and maleic acids present in most alcoholic drinks increase the secretion of gastric acids.
It is a known fact that coffee contains caffeine, which together with other components in your coffee increases the production of gastric acids. Two compounds, catechols and N-alkanoly-5-hydroxytryptamides, stimulate the production of gastric acids that will irritate the ulcer lesions. And although coffee itself does not cause an ulcer, its intake aggravates the existing situation. Decaffeinated coffee should also be avoided.
3. Spicy Foods
An important point to note is that spicy foods do not cause stomach ulcers but incorporating them in your stomach ulcer diet may irritate the stomach lining and worsen the condition of the ulcers.
However, there is a twist to all these. It has been found that some chilies such as red capsicum and cayenne pepper contain a compound called capsaicin that may inhibit the secretion of gastric acids. Moreover, it stimulates secretion of mucus, alkali and mucosal blood that thicken the stomach lining, thus shielding it from irritation.
4. Red Meat
Bleeding In The Brain
Many patients on Eliquis are older and at risk of falling, hitting their head, and suffering a cerebral hemorrhage . It occurs when a burst blood vessel causes blood to accumulate inside the skull, which puts pressure on the brain and causes brain damage. Symptoms include headache, weakness, confusion, and paralysis, particularly on one side of the body.
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Management Of Persistent Du Bleeding
Alternative treatment strategies have to be chosen when endoscopy fails and bleeding persists or reoccurs. In general, 2 treatment options are currently available, i.e., surgery and transcatheter arterial embolization . Both treatment options have pros and cons, and the individual clinical presentation and local factors such as the availability of an experienced radiologist or surgeon determine further therapeutic steps. Additionally, patients with high-risk DU are also usually older and have more comorbidities, which has to be taken into account when choosing between surgery and TAE .
Could I Have An Ulcer And Not Know It
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Around 25 million people will have a stomach ulcer in their lifetime, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Despite their prevalence, the symptoms of an ulcer can frequently be mistaken for other conditions, like heartburnand some people may not show any signs at all. Its also unlikely that stress or your diet is the culprit. If youre concerned that your stomach pain could be something more serious, read on to find out the causes, proper treatment and prevention methods for peptic ulcers.
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What Ulcer Treatments Are Available
If your ulcer is bleeding, your doctor may treat it during an endoscopy procedure by injecting medications into it. Your doctor could also use a clamp or cauterization to seal it off and stop the bleeding.
For most people, doctors treat ulcers with medications, including:
- Proton pump inhibitors : These drugs reduce acid, which allows the ulcer to heal. PPIs include Prilosec®, Prevacid®, Aciphex®, Protonix® and Nexium®.
- Histamine receptor blockers : These drugs also reduce acid production and include Tagamet®, Pepcid®, Zantac® and Axid®.
- Antibiotics: These medications kill bacteria. Doctors use them to treat H. pylori.
- Protective medications: Like a liquid bandage, these medications cover the ulcer in a protective layer to prevent further damage from digestive acids and enzymes. Doctors commonly recommend Carafate® or Pepto-Bismol®.
How Stomach Ulcers Are Treated
With treatment, most stomach ulcers will heal within a month or two. The treatment recommended for you will depend on what caused the ulcer.
Most people will be prescribed a medication called a proton pump inhibitor to reduce the amount of acid their stomach produces and allow the ulcer to heal naturally.
If an H. pylori infection is responsible for the ulcers, antibiotics will also be used to kill the bacteria, which should prevent the ulcer coming back.
If the ulcers are caused by the use of NSAIDs, PPIs are usually prescribed and your doctor will discuss whether you should keep using NSAIDs.
Alternative medication to NSAIDs, such as paracetamol, may be recommended.
Stomach ulcers can come back after treatment, although this is less likely to happen if the underlying cause is addressed.
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Why Change My Diet
There are so many benefits to changing your diet if you suffer from stomach ulcers that it would be foolish not to. When you follow a diet that primates healthy stomach and gut health you will:
- Obtain the protein and nutrients that your body needs to repair itself.
- Help you to remove all foods that are aggravating the small intestine and stomach lining.
- It can help to minimize or control the symptoms of related conditions like bacterial infections, Crohns disease, or celiac. These can aggravate ulcer symptoms.
- Help to fill in any contributing nutritional deficiencies.
Certain foods help to repair the gastrointestinal lining that erodes form long term use of anti-inflammatory drugs or bacterial infection.
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How Can I Look After Myself If I Have A Peptic Ulcer
As well as seeking help from a healthcare professional, there are things you can do to care for yourself:
- Eat a well-balanced diet and have regular meals.
- Eat smaller meals and eat your evening meal 34 hours before going to bed.
- Identify and avoid food and drinks that make the pain worse
- Antacids can offer short term relief and may help protect the lining of the stomach. You can buy antacids from your local pharmacy.
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Diagnosing A Peptic Ulcer
The only way to definitively diagnose a peptic ulcer is through an upper GI endoscopy, which is when your doctor uses a flexible scope with a camera on the end of it to inspect your esophagus, stomach and duodenum.
An upper GI endoscopy is typically done while the patient is under light sedation, and takes about 15 to 30 minutes. The procedure allows the doctor to physically see any ulcers present in your stomach lining or duodenum.
Your doctor can also do some tests to check for H. pylori infection. H. pylori is a common bacterium that doesnÃ¢t always cause symptoms, but it can sometimes break down the lining of your stomach or duodenum, causing ulcers.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, H. pylori causes over 90 percent of duodenal ulcers and up to 80 percent of gastric ulcers. The bacteria have also been linked to gastritis and stomach cancer. There are blood, stool and breath tests that your doctor can do to check for the presence of H. pylori.
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Immediate Action Required: Immediate
Call your GP immediately or go to the emergency department if:
- you have symptoms of severe bleeding
In the hospital, a doctor will do an endoscopy to identify the cause of the bleeding. They can give you treatment during the endoscopy to stop the bleeding.
Your doctor may do a specialised procedure with x-ray guidance to stop a bleeding ulcer. In rare cases, you may need surgery to repair the affected blood vessel.
You may also need blood transfusions to replace the blood you have lost.
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Best Foods To Eat When You Have A Stomach Ulcer
Stomach ulcers may require lifestyle and dietary changes to manage them while they are healing. Acid reducing medications may also be beneficial. Previously, a bland diet was recommended for stomach ulcers but current research does not support that idea.
Dietary modifications can help, but spicy foods arent necessarily an irritant. Doctors now emphasize a diet rich in vegetables and fruits. The best foods to eat when you have a stomach ulcer include:
This includes oats, legumes, flax seeds, nuts, oranges, apples, and carrots. These foods are good for you because they can help prevent ulcers from developing.
Vitamin A rich foods
Foods like broccoli, sweet potatoes, kale, spinach, and collard greens contain vitamin A. These foods increase the mucus production in your gastrointestinal tract, which some believe can help prevent ulcers.
Emerging research indicates that green tea can help fight off H. pylori.
This includes garlic, onions, cranberries, strawberries, blueberries, and snap peas. Research suggests that these foods can help protect your gut against chronic gastritis, H. pylori infection, and stomach cancer. These foods help inhibit H. pylori growth.
This tart juice can potentially reduce the risk of H. pylori overgrowth in your stomach and prevent inflammation.
There are certain foods that could irritate your stomach ulcer, and it might be a good idea to limit them. Those foods include: