What Is A Bleeding Ulcer
The stomach is a mixing bowl, allowing food and digestive juices to combine and allow digestion to begin. But the stomach has a protective lining that prevents digestive enzymes from eating away at it. If this lining is damaged, inflammation and pain may occur. If the inflammation becomes worse, it can cause the lining of the stomach or the duodenum to bleed. The bleeding may not be noticeable, and the patient may not seek medical care.
Red blood cells carry oxygen to all the organs of the body. If there are too few red cells, symptoms may occur. Some of these symptoms are pretty non-specific, like
What Should I Do If I Think I Have A Stomach Ulcer
Always seek medical care for a stomach ulcer. While you may be able to manage symptoms temporarily with over-the-counter medications, these wont heal the ulcer. You need to identify and treat the underlying cause. An untreated ulcer can lead to serious complications, even if your symptoms are mild. The major cause of stomach ulcers, H. pylori infection, can also lead to other complications.
When To Seek Medical Attention
If you notice any of the symptoms, consult your doctor. Even when the discomfort is mild, ulcers get worse as time passes. If the ulcer is not treated, the pain will become progressively more severe.
In some cases, the ulcer might become life-threatening. The symptoms of a severe ulcer condition include:
- Vomiting blood
- Passing dark, sticky stools
The bleeding can be bright red or even have a dark brown appearance similar to coffee grounds.
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Does Ulcerative Colitis Make You Immunocompromised
Ulcerative colitis doesnt make you immunocompromised. Some of the medicines that treat it may change the way your immune system responds. This change is different for each medication. Some of these changes may increase the risk of certain infections or other issues. A discussion with your health care team before starting a medication is the best way to understand these risks and ways to prevent them.
Herbal Remedies That Help
You may have learned how to cure stomach ulcer permanently by changing your diet, but you can also try some herbal remedies to get better results. Here are some suggestions:
Regular use of licorice may also help treat your stomach ulcers. Licorice is beneficial because it contains compounds beneficial for the lining of the stomach. You can make a cup of licorice tea for relief or even make licorice juice to treat stomach ulcers.
2. Slippery Elm
Slippery elm bark can help treat your stomach ulcers because it helps reduce acidity in your stomach. Simply take the slippery elm bark and grind it to make a fine powder. Consume this powder on a daily basis until you find some relief.
This is a beneficial herb for anyone interested in learning how to cure stomach ulcer permanently. Just take the calendula and dry it. Then, use it to make a cup of calendula tea and drink it regularly for relief.
4. Yellow Root
Ulcers could be the result of the bacterium called H. pylori. It irritates the stomach lining and aggravates your condition. You may benefit from yellow root because it has antibiotic properties. You may also notice some relief from the burning sensation that is usually associated with ulcers.
Treatment of peptic ulcers include antibiotics to clear H. pylori, prescription and over-the-counter medicines to manage symptoms, and lifestyle modifications to help ulcers heal.
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What Are The Possible Complications Of Peptic Ulcer Disease
An ulcer left untreated may cause serious complications, including:
- Internal bleeding: While most people with ulcers wont have bleeding, this is the most common complication that can occur. A slow bleeding ulcer can cause anemia or even severe blood loss.
- Perforation: An ulcer that is continuously eroded by acid can eventually become a hole in the stomach or intestinal wall. This is intensely painful and also dangerous. It allows bacteria from the digestive tract to enter the abdominal cavity, which can lead to an infection of the abdominal cavity called peritonitis. From there, the infection is at risk of spreading to the rest of the body . This can lead to a life-threatening condition called .
- Obstruction: An ulcer in the pyloric channel, the narrow passageway that leads from the stomach into the duodenum, can become an obstruction that blocks the flow of food into the small intestine. This can happen after the ulcer has healed. Ulcers that have gone through a healing process may build up scar tissue that enlarges them. An ulcer that is big enough to obstruct the small intestine can stall the digestive process, with numerous side effects.
- Stomach cancer: Some gastric ulcers can become malignant over time. This is more likely when your ulcer is caused by H. pylori infection. H. pylori is a contributing cause of gastric cancer, though fortunately this is uncommon.
Nsaid Drugs And Stomach Ulcers
A group of painkillers known as NSAIDs carries a risk of stomach ulcers. The two best-known NSAIDs are aspirin and ibuprofen.
The risk of ulcers increases if the drugs are taken in high doses, or regularly for a long time.
Stronger NSAIDs, such as those that need a prescription, are riskier for stomach ulcers than those that can be bought over-the-counter .
People should always check labels and talk to a pharmacist or a doctor about any concerns with using painkillers. They may recommend an alternative such as acetaminophen.
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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.
Try Our 14 Day Healthy Gut Meal Plan And Recipes
Our 14 Day healthy gut meal plan has been designed especially for those experiencing gut irritation and will help to heal an inflamed stomach lining. The recipes will nurture a healthy gut through their antioxidant and anti inflammatory ingredients. All full of prebiotics, probiotics, fibre, polyphenols, multi-grains, gut friendly fruit and vegetables. Theyre NOT full of added sugars and artificial ingredients.
A sample of tasty recipes from the meal plan include:
Dinner: Thai Meatballs with Zucchini Noodles
Additional recipes to calm an inflamed stomach can be found here
Keep an eye on what triggers discomfort in your stomach
As with all foods, its best to take note of what upsets your stomach and if something that should be healing actually upsets your stomach be sure to remove it from your diet. Its important to ensure that you arent overly restricting your nutrient intake so look for alternative sources in particular of protein, fat or fibre in your diet if you are removing anything for a few weeks.
Remember increase the variety of foods after a few weeks, if you stay on a restricted diet your good gut bacteria wont flourish. This can be one of the main culprits for a bad gut bacteria overgrowth and damaged stomach lining.
Other Tips for a healthy Stomach Lining
Read more about the importance of a healthy gut on our physical and mental wellbeing: the gut-hormone connection and the effect of gut health on memory.
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Causes And Risk Factors Of Peptic Ulcers
For a long time, it was believed that spicy foods or stress led to peptic ulcers but doctors now know that this isnt the case.
In fact, the most common causes of ulcers are:
- Helicobacter pylori, a type of bacteria that can infect your stomach
- Use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as aspirin, Advil or Motrin , and Aleve , which can wear away at the mucus layer of the digestive tract
Certain factors can put a person at a greater risk of developing a peptic ulcer, including:
- Taking high doses of NSAIDs
- Using NSAIDs continuously over a long period of time
- Being female
- Having a history of ulcer disease
- Taking corticosteroids, medications that may be prescribed to treat asthma, arthritis, or lupus
Caring For Venous Ulcers
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Can A Peptic Ulcer Come Back
Yes, a peptic ulcer can come back. If you smoke or take NSAIDs, peptic ulcers are more likely to come back. If you need to take an NSAID, your doctor may switch you to a different medicine or add medicines to help prevent a peptic ulcer. Peptic ulcer disease can return, even if you have been careful to reduce your risk.
How Does H Pylori Cause Ulcers
Although many people naturally carry H. pylori, it is not clear why the 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 causes inflammation. Patients with peptic ulcers caused by H. pylori need treatment to get rid of the bacterium from the stomach, and to prevent them coming back.
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What Are The Complications Of Peptic Ulcers
Ulcers can cause serious problems if you dont get treatment.
The most common problems include:
- Bleeding. As an ulcer wears away the muscles of the stomach or duodenal wall, blood vessels may be hurt. This causes bleeding.
- Hole . Sometimes an ulcer makes a hole in the wall of your stomach or duodenum. When this happens, bacteria and partly digested food can get in. This causes infection and redness or swelling .
- Narrowing and blockage . Ulcers that are found where the duodenum joins the stomach can cause swelling and scarring. This can narrow or even block the opening to the duodenum. Food cant leave your stomach and go into your small intestine. This causes vomiting. You cant eat properly.
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Bleeding And Swollen Gums
A few drops of blood after some overzealous flossing might seem little cause for concern, but dont ignore it.
Bleeding gums is a sign of inflammation in the body and a reduced immune system, says James.
Puffy gums can also signal pregnancy. Often we spot when our patients are pregnant just by looking in their mouths, reveals James, noting that symptoms include swollen gums and more bleeding than usual.
Its much easier to spot if weve seen the patient previously, when they werent pregnant, so we can compare.
Dentists can even clock that a woman is pregnant before she opens her mouth, says James.
Some will feel nauseous when the chair is laid flat!
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What Are The Treatments For An Ulcer
You shouldnât treat an ulcer on your own without first seeing your doctor. Over-the-counter antacids and acid blockers may ease some or all of the pain, but the relief is always short-lived. With a doctor’s help, you can find an end to ulcer pain as well as a lifelong cure for it.
The chief goals of ulcer treatment are reducing the amount of acid in the stomach and strengthening the protective lining that comes in direct contact with stomach acids. If your ulcer is caused by bacterial infection, your doctor will also treat that.
Living With Ulcerative Colitis
With careful management, most people with UC are able to enjoy life, including work, travel, recreation, sex and having children.
To keep healthy, consider:
- eating a nutritious diet to help with healing and reduce fatigue
- keeping a food diary to check if there are any foods that make your symptoms worse during a flare-up
- asking your doctor about supplements if you think you may be malnourished
- exercising regularly to lift your mood and help relieve stress
- learning some relaxation techniques to help manage stress
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How To Treat A Bleeding Ulcer
This article was co-authored by Dale Prokupek, MD. Dale Prokupek, MD is a board-certified Internist and Gastroenterologist who runs a private practice based in Los Angeles, California. Dr. Prokupek is also a staff physician at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and an associate clinical professor of medicine at the Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles . Dr. Prokupek has over 30 years of medical experience and specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the liver, stomach, and colon, including chronic hepatitis C, colon cancer, hemorrhoids, anal condyloma, and digestive diseases related to chronic immune deficiency. He holds a BS in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin Madison and an MD from the Medical College of Wisconsin. He completed an internal medicine residency at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and a gastroenterology fellowship at the UCLA Geffen School of Medicine.There are 9 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 100% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 407,516 times.
Reduce Stress In Daily Life
Stress reduction techniques can help control signs and symptoms. To relieve stress, try:
Identify stressors in your current life. Learn how to manage stress. Exercise, if your doctor confirms its safe, and listening to soothing music can help.
Learn and practice relaxation techniques. May include relaxing breathing, meditation, yoga, and muscle relaxation.
Pursue relaxing activities. Spend time doing things you enjoy, such as hobbies or sports.
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Home Remedies For Ulcer Pain
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When Should I See A Doctor If I Think I Have A Peptic Ulcer
- If you have burning pain in your upper stomach that is relieved by eating or taking antacids, call a health-care professional for an appointment. Don’t assume you have an ulcer. Certain other conditions can cause similar symptoms.
- If you vomit blood or have other signs of gastrointestinal bleeding, go to an emergency department right away. Peptic ulcers can cause massive bleeding, which requires blood transfusion or surgery.
- Severe abdominal pain suggests perforation or tearing of an ulcer. This is an emergency that may require surgery to fix a hole in your stomach.
- Vomiting and abdominal pain also can be a sign of an obstruction, another complication of peptic ulcers. This also may require emergency surgery.
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