Peptic Ulcers – Symptoms, Causes
Peptic ulcers are open sores that appear on the stomach’s inner lining and the upper part of the small intestine. The most common symptom of a peptic ulcer is abdominal pain.
Peptic Ulcers Include:
Gastric ulcers occur inside the stomach.
Duodenal ulcers that occur in the upper part of the small intestine (duodenum)
The most common causes of peptic ulcers are infection with the bacteria Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) and long-term use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) and naproxen sodium (Aleve). ). Stress and spicy foods do not cause peptic ulcers. However, they can make symptoms worse.
- burning pain in the abdomen
- Feeling of fullness, bloating or belching
- Fatty food intolerance
The most common symptom of a peptic ulcer is a burning pain in the stomach. The pain may worsen between meals and at night. Heartburn makes the pain worse, as does an empty stomach. Pain can often be relieved by eating certain foods that buffer stomach acid or taking acid-reducing medications, but it may return later.
- Many people with peptic ulcers do not even have symptoms
- Less commonly, ulcers can cause severe signs or symptoms, such as:
- Vomiting or vomiting of blood that may look red or black.
- Dark blood in the stool or black or tarry stools
- laboured breathing
- feeling of weakness
- nausea or vomiting
- impenetrable weight loss
- changes in appetite
When to See a Doctor
Contact your doctor if you skill any severe signs or symptoms listed above. Also, see your doctor if antacids and acid blockers provide relief but the pain returns.
Peptic ulcers occur when acid from the digestive system eats away inside the stomach and small intestine. The acid can create an open wound that is painful and may bleed.
The digestive system is covered with a mucus layer that protects it from acid. However, if the number of acid increases or the amount of mucus decreases, you may develop an ulcer.
Here are the Most Common Reasons:
Helicobacter pylori usually live in the mucosal layer that covers and protects the tissues that line the stomach and small intestine. In many cases, these bacteria do not cause problems, but they can inflame the lining of the stomach and cause an ulcer
It is not clear how Helicobacter pylori infection spreads. It can be passed through close contact, such as kissing, from one person to another. People can also become infected with Helicobacter pylori through food and water.
Frequent use of certain painkillers. Taking aspirin, as well as some prescription and over-the-counter pain relievers called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), can cause irritation or inflammation of the lining of your stomach and small intestine. These drugs include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others), naproxen sodium (Aleve, Anaprox DS, others), ketoprofen, etc. They do not include acetaminophen (Tylenol, etc.).
Other medicines. Taking certain medications, such as steroids, anticoagulants, low-dose aspirin, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), alendronate (Fosamax), and risedronate (Actonel), along with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can significantly increase the chance of an ulcer.
In addition to the risks associated with taking NSAIDs, you may be at increased risk of peptic ulcers if you:
- Do you smoke? Smoking can increase the risk of peptic ulcers in people infected with Helicobacter pylori.
- You drink alcohol. Alcohol can irritate and erode the stomach lining and increase the amount of stomach acid produced.
- You have untreated stress.
- You eat spicy food.
- By themselves, these factors do not cause ulcers, but they can make them worse and harder to heal.
Left Untreated, Peptic Ulcers can Develop:
internal bleeding Bleeding may present as a slow loss of blood leading to anaemia or severe blood loss that may require hospitalization or a blood transfusion. Severe blood loss can cause black or bloody vomit or black or bloody stools.
A hole (perforation) in the wall of the stomach. Peptic ulcers can perforate the stomach or small intestine wall and cause a severe infection in the abdomen (peritonitis).
Let. Peptic ulcers can block the passage of food through the digestive tract, leading to mild bloating, vomiting, and weight loss, either due to swelling, inflammation, or scarring.
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