Stomach ulcers or peptic ulcers are sores, holes or breaks in the lining of stomach, intestine and/or esophagus. This condition occurs when the digestive acids in the stomach damage the protective mucus lining of stomach, intestine or esophagus. Stomach ulcers can be cured easily without proper treatment, otherwise it can become severe.
- Bacterial infection, mostly H.pylori bacteria
- Use of pain relievers, such as aspirin
- Use of steroids and anticoagulants
- Smoking and alcohol abuse
Ulcers may not exhibit any symptoms in the early stages. A burning abdominal pain is the most common symptom otherwise.
- Burning pain in stomach
- Weight Loss
- Blood in stool
- Unexplained weight loss
- Change in appetite
- Chest pain
Diagnosis for stomach or peptic ulcers is based on:
- Medical history
- Physical examination
- Blood tests
- Stool tests
- Breath tests
- Upper GI (gastrointestinal) test
Preventive measures for ulcer includes:
- Stay clean and wash hands properly to avoid infections
- Limit use of or be careful while using pain relievers.
To avoid further progression of the condition, the following measures can be useful:
- Avoid smoking
- Avoid alcoholism
- Avoid or limit spicy food
- Stress control
- Consider changing the pain reliever by taking your doctor’s opinion.
Peptic ulcers are mostly treated with medicines. Most of the ulcers heal with medications. If healing has not occured with medications or if the condition is severe and causes a perforation or internal bleeding, surgery might be required.
- Medication involves drugs that helps to:
- Reduce acid production
- Block acid production
- Stop acid production
- Protect lining of stomach and intestine
- Destroy bacteria.
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