Peptic ulcers are open sores that develop on the inside lining of the stomach and the upper part of your small intestine. The most typical symptom of a peptic ulcer is stomach pain.
Stomach ulcers, which are also known as gastric ulcers, are painful sores in the stomach lining. Stomach ulcers are a type of peptic ulcer disease. Peptic ulcers are any ulcers that affect both the stomach and small intestines.
Stomach ulcers occur when the thick layer of mucus that protects your stomach from digestive juices is reduced. This allows the digestive acids to eat away at the tissues that line the stomach, causing an ulcer.
Stomach ulcers may be easily cured, but they can become severe without proper treatment.
Peptic ulcers include:
- Gastric ulcers that occur on the inside of the stomach
- Duodenal ulcers that occur on the inside of the upper portion of your small intestine (duodenum)
The most frequent causes of peptic ulcers are infection with the bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) and long-term use of aspirin and some additional painkillers, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others) and naproxen sodium (Aleve, Anaprox, others). Tension and hot foods don’t cause peptic ulcers. But they could make your symptoms worse.
Symptoms of Peptic Ulcer
- Fatty food intolerance
- Burning stomach pain
- Feeling of fullness, bloating or belching
The most usual peptic ulcer symptom is burning stomach pain. Stomach acidity makes the pain worse, as does with an empty tummy. The pain may frequently be alleviated by eating particular foods which buffer stomach acid or simply by taking an acid-reducing medicine, but then it could return. The pain may be worse between meals and during the nighttime.
Virtually three-quarters of individuals with peptic ulcers do not have symptoms.
Less often, ulcers may cause severe signs or symptoms such as:
- Feeling faint
- Nausea or vomiting
- Unexplained weight loss
- Appetite changes
- Vomiting or vomiting blood — which may appear red or black
- Dark blood in stools, or stools that are black or tarry
- Trouble breathing
Peptic Ulcer causes
Your digestive tract is coated with a mucous layer that normally protects against acid. But if the amount of acid is increased or the amount of mucus is decreased, you could develop an ulcer. Common causes include:
A bacterium. Helicobacter pylori bacteria commonly reside in the mucous layer that covers and protects cells that line the stomach and small intestine. Many times, that the H. pylori bacterium causes no issues, but it can lead to inflammation of the stomach inner coating, making an ulcer.
It’s not clear how H. pylori infection spreads. It may be transmitted from person to person by close contact, such as kissing. People may also contract H. pylori through food and water.
Regular use of certain pain relievers.
Prevention of Peptic Ulcer
Protect yourself from infections.
Use caution with pain relievers.
Work with your doctor to find the lowest dose possible that still gives you pain relief. Avoid drinking alcohol when taking your medication, since the two can combine to increase your risk of stomach upset.
If you need to take a pain medication associated with ulcers, you may need to also take additional medications such as an antacid, a PPI, an acid blocker or cytoprotective agent.