Why Are Ulcers Worse At Night
Ulcers are the open sores that develop in the inner lining of the stomach or duodenum. One of the aggravating factors is an increase in gastric acid in the stomach. When we eat food at night, our stomach makes a lot of acid to digest the food.
Once the digestion is completed, the stomach gets emptied and it remains as such for a longer duration of time. But the gastric acid levels still remain high there, as a result of which ulcers that are already present worsen.
When To Contact A Doctor
Anyone who thinks they may have an ulcer in their stomach should consult a doctor. Any stomach symptoms that last for more than a few days or keep happening need evaluation and treatment.
Symptoms of anemia, such as tiredness and breathlessness, may signal a slow-bleeding ulcer. More serious bleeding is an urgent medical problem, as people may vomit up blood, or stools are black and sticky.
Perforation is also an emergency. Without quick treatment, the wall of the stomach can become infected. Sudden stomach pain that gets worse can indicate perforation, and any signs of being very unwell with infection need treatment as soon as possible.
How Do Nsaids Cause A Peptic Ulcer
To understand how NSAIDs cause peptic ulcer disease, it is important to understand how NSAIDs work. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs reduce pain, fever, and inflammation, or swelling.
Everyone has two enzymes that produce chemicals in your bodys cells that promote pain, inflammation, and fever. NSAIDs work by blocking or reducing the amount of these enzymes that your body makes. However, one of the enzymes also produces another type of chemical that protects the stomach lining from stomach acid and helps control bleeding. When NSAIDs block or reduce the amount of this enzyme in your body, they also increase your chance of developing a peptic ulcer.
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Symptoms Of Peptic Ulcers
You may not have symptoms straightaway with an ulcer. Youre more likely to have a so-called silent ulcer if you are male, older, smoke, or are taking NSAIDs such as ibuprofen.
If you do have symptoms, a common one is abdominal pain or discomfort. You may also have pain in the middle of your back. If you have a duodenal ulcer , the pain tends to come on a couple of hours after a meal. Generally, it goes away when you eat again. You may also have pain that wakes you up at night when you have an empty stomach.
A gastric ulcer generally causes pain shortly after eating. Lying flat may relieve it. An oesophageal ulcer may cause abdominal or lower chest pain and make it difficult to swallow.
Indigestion is often a sign of a peptic ulcer. You may:
- feel or be sick
- have heartburn when the contents of your stomach go back up your oesophagus
Some symptoms may mean you have peptic ulcer complications. Or they can be caused by another medical condition, including cancer. You should see your GP urgently if you:
- are losing weight without dieting
- see blood in your vomit or your poo looks black and tar-like
- are very tired, as this may be caused by anaemia
- have trouble swallowing
- feel full soon after youve started eating
When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider
See your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these symptoms:
- Vomiting blood or dark material that looks like coffee grounds
- Extreme weakness or dizziness
- Nausea or vomiting that doesnt get better, or gets worse
- A sudden, severe pain that may spread to your back
- Losing weight without even trying
Untreated peptic ulcers may cause other health problems. Sometimes they bleed. If they become too deep, they can break through your stomach.
Ulcers can also keep food from going through your stomach.
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What Kind Of Doctor Treats Peptic Ulcers
- If you suspect you may have a peptic ulcer, you may first be diagnosed by your family practitioner or internist.
- Children or teenagers may see a pediatrician.
- For further treatment you will likely be referred to a gastroenterologist, a specialist in disorders of the digestive tract.
- If you have an emergency such as vomiting or severe abdominal pain you will be seen by an emergency medicine specialist in an emergency room.
- In the rare case where surgery is needed, you may see a general surgeon.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of H Pylori Infections
Many people who get an H. pylori infection dont realize it. Often, these infections dont cause symptoms.
When the bacteria do cause symptoms, theyre usually either symptoms of gastritis or peptic ulcer disease.
In kids, symptoms of gastritis may include:
In older kids and adults, the most common symptom of peptic ulcers is a lasting or burning belly pain, usually in the area below the ribs and above the navel. This pain often gets worse on an empty stomach and gets better as soon as the person eats food, drinks milk, or takes antacid medicine.
Peptic ulcers that bleed can cause:
- hematemesis : bloody vomit or vomit that looks like coffee grounds
- melena : stool thats black, bloody, or looks like tar
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Who Is More Likely To Get Ulcers
One in 10 people develops an ulcer. Risk factors that make ulcers more likely include:
- Frequent use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , a group of common pain relievers that includes ibuprofen .
- A family history of ulcers.
- Illness such as liver, kidney or lung disease.
- Regularly drinking alcohol.
Complications Associated With Nervous Stomach
Left untreated, symptoms of nervous stomach can contribute to future symptoms. One study demonstrated a relationship between irritable bowel syndrome and a range of psychiatric disorders. Bear in mind correlation is not the same as causation. So this is not the same as saying that nervous stomach is caused by psychiatric disorder or psychiatric disorder is caused by nervous stomach. It’s much more likely a mix of both.
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America says the types of chemicals that are released when a person is stressed have a negative effect on gut health. This creates imbalances known to be risk factors for digestive conditions.
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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.
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When Should I Go To The Doctor For An Ulcer
Ulcers are the open sores that develop in the stomach lining. It starts with symptoms that are mild initially but may get serious or fatal if left untreated.
The most common symptoms are dull and burning pain in the stomach followed by bloating and burping, nausea and vomiting, weight loss with or without loss of appetite, feeling of weakness or anemia and sudden acute pain that persists for a longer duration.
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What Causes Stomach Ulcers In Children
H. pylori is a corkscrew-shaped bacterium commonly linked to chronic gastritis and stomach ulcers. Around 50% of the worlds population is believed to have H. pylori. According to one study, over 30% of these people will develop upper gastrointestinal symptoms.
While H. pylori is a common cause of stomach ulcers in children, other factors may either cause or contribute to their development. Among them are:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin or ibuprofen, which may lead to gastric bleeding and ulcers when overused
- Genetics, with a family history present in about 20% of children who have stomach ulcers
- Extremely stressful events, which may trigger acute symptoms that occur within three to six days
- Obesity,which can lead to increased gastrointestinal inflammation and changes in the normal gut bacteria
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease , in which chronic acid reflux can lead to stomach ulcers in severe cases
While generalized stress, anxiety, and spicy foods do not cause ulcers, they can exacerbate existing ones.
Uncommon causes include hypersecretory disorders in which excessive stomach acids are produced. Examples include cystic fibrosis, basophilic leukemia, Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, and multiple endocrine neoplasias.
Nsaids And Stomach Ulcers
The risk of ulcers increases if the drugs are taken in high doses or regularly for a long time.
Stronger NSAIDs, such as those available on prescription, carry a greater risk of stomach ulcers than those that people can buy over the counter.
A person should always check labels and consult a pharmacist or a doctor about any concerns regarding using pain relief medication. They may recommend an alternative, such as acetaminophen.
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How Do I Know If I Have An Ulcer Or Gastritis
There are also many differences between the two conditions. Both conditions cause inflammation in the stomach lining, but gastritis is general inflammation while an ulcer is a patch of inflamed stomach lining. Ulcers cause more severe, localized pain with the risk of cancer, bleeding, and stomach perforation.
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Gastric Ulcer Symptoms Causes And Treatment Know Them All
Gastric ulcer symptoms vary, and this frequent condition can greatly affect the life of the one who suffers from it. Learn all about it!
The excess of gastric acids that some people suffer makes them more prone to developing gastric ulcers. That is, they occur when the lining of the stomach or duodenum is damaged. Therefore, a gastric ulcer is a wound or sore in the lining of the stomach or duodenum. However, it could appear in the esophagus and even in later sections of the small intestine.
Most ulcers occur in the first layer of lining that covers the affected organ. Sometimes they are so large that they pierce the stomach. If this were to happen, the patients life would be in danger. Hence, it must be addressed with the utmost urgency.
Hence, it is essential to know this disorder. This way we will be in better conditions to prevent it.
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Determining Which Stomach Ulcer Treatment Is Right For You
The right treatment for your stomach ulcer will depend on its underlying cause. If you seek treatment before your ulcer becomes too severe, all youll need is a prescription from your doctor. If your ulcer has begun to bleed, however, you will probably need to be hospitalized so you can receive intensive treatment. In certain instances, a blood transfusion may be required. And in rare cases, you may need surgery to fully treat your stomach ulcer.
When To See A Healthcare Provider
A nervous stomach may resolve on its own. But there are certain signs and symptoms that it’s time to see a healthcare provider. If you discuss your symptoms, the healthcare provider may order routine lab tests to check for underlying causes like anemia.
See a healthcare provider for nervous stomach immediately if you notice the following:
- Unexplained weight reduction
- Blood in stool or blackish, tarry stools
- Chronic or unresolved gastrointestinal issues including heartburn
- Your symptoms are causing work or social life challenges
If you have family history of digestive disorders or digestive cancers such as stomach cancer or colon cancer, this is helpful information for a healthcare provider.
You may be referred to a gastroenterologist and/or a mental healthcare provider such as a counselor or psychiatrist, depending on your overall symptoms and family medical history.
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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.
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.
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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.
How Is Gastritis Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will ask about your symptoms and history and perform a physical exam. Your provider may also order one or more of these tests:
- Breath test: During an H. pylori breath test, you swallow a capsule or liquid containing urea, a harmless radioactive material. You then exhale into a balloon-like bag. H. pylori bacteria change urea into carbon dioxide. If you have the bacteria, the breath test will show an increase in carbon dioxide.
- Blood test: A blood test checks for antibodies titers that fight H. pylori bacteria.
- Stool test: This test checks for H. pylori bacteria in your stool .
- Upper endoscopy: Your doctor uses an endoscope to see your stomach. The doctor inserts the scope through your esophagus, which connects your mouth to your stomach. An upper endoscopy procedure allows your provider to examine the stomach lining. You may also have a tissue sample taken from your stomach lining to test for infection.
- Upper gastrointestinal exam: During an upper GI exam, you swallow a chalky substance called barium. The liquid coats your stomach lining, providing more detailed X-ray images.
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Are There Foods I Should Avoid If I Have A Stomach Ulcer
Interestingly, there is no specific diet that a person with ulcers needs to follow. The current recommendations are less about the foods you should avoid and more about foods that will help you lessen the risk of developing an ulcer in the first place.
If youve developed a stomach ulcer or are at risk of developing one, you should include more of these foods in your diet:
- Fruits and vegetables that are full of antioxidants that are anti-inflammatory
- Nuts, halibut, and yellowfin tuna, which all have selenium to enhance your ability to heal
- Probiotics that have active bacterial properties, such as yogurt, to improve digestion
- Spinach, oysters, and beef, which contain zinc to help you maintain a healthy immune system
Plenty of water, leafy greens, and fermented probiotic foods have all clinically been shown to help lessen your risk of developing ulcers. During the holiday season, you will want to take additional care of yourself and pay attention to your stress levels. Talk with your doctor about whether adding a probiotic supplement could also help you.
On the other hand, if you have acid reflux in addition to a stomach ulcer, there are foods that may trigger your acid reflux. In these instances, its a good idea to avoid alcohol and coffee, as well as spicy and acidic foods, which could cause your discomfort to increase.