Stomach Ulcer Diagnosis And Conventional Treatment
If you suspect you have a stomach ulcer, see your doctor to first rule out other causes of your pain. In order to diagnose a stomach ulcer, your doctor may perform an endoscopy, which allows the doctor to view the inside lining of the esophagus, stomach and small intestine. Once a diagnosis is verified, treatment options can begin.
Your doctor will likely take your medical history and perform a physical exam along with a blood test, plus ask you about your past use of medications and possibly do an X-ray to locate a stomach ulcer. Testing the blood for H. pylori, plus doing a urea breath test and/or stool test to look for the presence of H. pylori antigens, are common ways to diagnose an ulcer.
The goal of stomach ulcer treatments is to help reduce pain and inflammation in the digestive tract, boost the immune system to fight H. pylori bacteria, prevent complications, and lower the chance for future ulcers from forming or returning.
Today, conventional treatment options for stomach ulcers include:
If Your Ulcer Was Caused By Helicobacter Pylori
Most stomach ulcers are caused by infection with H. pylori. Therefore, a main part of the treatment is to clear this infection. If this infection is not cleared, the ulcer is likely to return once you stop taking acid-suppressing medication. For more information, see the separate leaflet called Helicobacter Pylori.
What Treatments Can Relieve Ulcer Pain
While over-the-counter medications can treat an upset stomach, they are generally not effective in treating ulcers. And taking over-the-counter painkillers could worsen the problem. That is why its better to see a doctor, who may combine several medications and therapies to relieve pain, cure the infection, and prevent it from worsening. Medications usually include:
Your doctor may also recommend making lifestyle modifications, including:
- Avoiding spicy and oily food
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Prevention Of Peptic Ulcers
Using alternatives to NSAIDs, like acetaminophen, to relieve pain can help prevent peptic ulcers. If you need to use an NSAID, opt for the lowest dose and take it with a meal.
Peptic ulcers caused by infection with Helicobacter pylori are not usually preventable, but good hygiene such as washing your hands thoroughly before eating and after using the bathroom may help limit the spread.
Is Cbd Oil Good For Stomach Ulcers
Although many states now have medical marijuana programs, the herb is not legal everywhere. An alternative that is far more widely available is CBD oil from industrial hemp. CBD is non-psychoactive, and experts consider it relatively safe and well-tolerated.
While CBD does not interact directly with CB1 and CB2 receptors like THC does, it may still have some benefits for digestive health. It can increase the levels of our natural endocannabinoids by inhibiting the enzymes that break them down.
There is currently no research specifically into CBD oil for stomach ulcers or CBD oil for ulcer pain. However, there is plenty of evidence to support its anti-inflammatory properties, and many people use it for everyday pain relief.
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Q: Can An Ulcer Be Completely Cured
A: If you have peptic ulcer disease, which can involve stomach ulcers and/or duodenal ulcers of the small intestine, the answer is yes! These ulcers can be completely healed.
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The development of H2 blockers and then Proton Pump Inhibitors allow for most ulcers to be completely healed with medication. With these treatment developments, surgery for peptic ulcer disease is seldom needed.
These types of ulcers are caused primarily by three things: Stomach acids, H. pylori infections and medications, such as aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen and naproxen .
Contrary to popular belief, the normal stress of day-to-day life does not cause or contribute to ulcers. Also, theres no genetic link involved with the risk for developing ulcers, and diet has no effect on the healing of an ulcer either.
Baking Soda Combined With Apple Cider Vinegar
The amalgamation of sodium bicarbonate and fermented apple solution may rather sound eccentric for a few. However, these proponents individually bear several health benefits that could help you cure and control your stomach ulcer.
Why Does it Work?
Baking soda, chemically referred to as sodium bicarbonate is a white alkaline powder that has proven its potential in curing several health conditions including stomach ulcers. In ulcers, it is commonly noticed that the stomach is completely filled with stomach acids and the inner lining of the wall is corroded due to acid.
When baking soda comes in contact with the acid, it neutralizes the acid, and as a by-product of this reaction, water is released. This is the first step, as the acid gets converted, the bacteria are then exposed, and apple cider vinegar that is a proven antimicrobial agent acts on the h pylori bacteria, and thereby prevents and cures stomach ulcers. Although there havent been any studies that have concluded on these claims, however, there are several anecdotes that claim the efficacy of this solution.
How Much to Use?
It is ideally recommended that you drink this once a day for at least a week. It is recommended that you check the improvements in health later.
How to Use?
- Honey to taste
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How Long Does Stomach Ulcer Take To Heal
Stomachulcer as the name suggests is an open sore with inflammation that formson the inside lining of the stomach. If left untreated it may turn to becomeserious, leading to dangerous complications. So its usually necessary to take prompttreatment to deal with! The good news, it is treatable and even often curable. Thebiggest question, how long does it take to heal?
What Ulcer Treatments Are Available
If your ulcer is bleeding, your doctor may treat it during an endoscopy procedure by injecting medications into it. Your doctor could also use a clamp or cauterization to seal it off and stop the bleeding.
For most people, doctors treat ulcers with medications, including:
- Proton pump inhibitors : These drugs reduce acid, which allows the ulcer to heal. PPIs include Prilosec®, Prevacid®, Aciphex®, Protonix® and Nexium®.
- Histamine receptor blockers : These drugs also reduce acid production and include Tagamet®, Pepcid®, Zantac® and Axid®.
- Antibiotics: These medications kill bacteria. Doctors use them to treat H. pylori.
- Protective medications: Like a liquid bandage, these medications cover the ulcer in a protective layer to prevent further damage from digestive acids and enzymes. Doctors commonly recommend Carafate® or Pepto-Bismol®.
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Alternative And Complementary Therapies
Certain lifestyle changes can help you recover from an ulcer.
- Watch your diet. If you know that there are specific foods that make your ulcer feel worse, avoid them until your treatment is over. For many people, these include alcohol, caffeine, fatty foods, spicy foods, and chocolate.
- Stop smoking. If you smoke, you are already at increased risk of getting an ulcer. The data also shows that ulcers take longer to heal in smokers and that the ulcer medication you are taking may be less effective. Scientists don’t know exactly why smoking has these negative effects.
- Take pain medication carefully. NSAIDs, such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and many other commonly taken drugs, are taken for pain and fever, but can cause an ulcer if used too often. NSAIDs can also prevent an ulcer from healing as quickly as you would like, so talk to your doctor about what you can take for your other aches and pains while you are waiting for your ulcer to heal. Acetaminophen does not cause ulcers, so it may be an effective substitute. Also, be sure to read all drug labels some cough and cold liquids have NSAID ingredients in them, and you should avoid them, too.
- Cut back on alcohol. Stop drinking alcohol if you want to completely reduce your risk of additional ulcers and help your body heal.
Common Causes And Treatment
The two most common causes of stomach ulcers are medications such as painkillers and bacteria like Helicobacter pylori .
The first step of treating your stomach ulcer is to remove its cause, such as changing your medication to one that doesnt bother your stomach as much. Testing for H. pylori bacteria can determine if it is the cause of your ulcer.
Once the cause is removed, the treatment enters the second stage, which is protecting your stomach from acid and the healing of the ulcer. Your doctor may prescribe proton pump inhibitors and H2 blockers. The former blocks acid-producing cells and the latter prevents excessive production of acid in the stomach. Your gastroenterologist may also prescribe medication to protect the lining of your stomach, such as antacids.
If your symptoms persist or recur, you may need surgical intervention. With surgery, your doctor can remove the ulcers in your stomach or sew tissue onto the ulcer. Any bleeding blood vessels may be tied off, or the nerve that controls the production of acid in the stomach may be severed.
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Types Of Stomach Ulcers
Ulcers can develop in various parts of the GI tract, including the esophagus, stomach and duodenum. Contrary to popular belief, research shows that men develop duodenal ulcers more often than any other kind, including stomach ulcers. On the other hand, the opposite is true for women: They tend to develop more stomach ulcers and fewer ulcers of the duodenal.
Many doctors refer to stomach ulcers simply as peptic ulcers. A few other types of ulcers and names that ulcers sometimes go by include:
What Is Peptic Ulcer Disease
Peptic ulcer disease is a condition in which painful sores or ulcers develop in the lining of the stomach or the first part of the small intestine . Normally, a thick layer of mucus protects the stomach lining from the effect of its digestive juices. But many things can reduce this protective layer, allowing stomach acid to damage the tissue.
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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
- Blood in your stools
- 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.
Stomach Ulcer Symptoms You Cant Ignore And How To Naturally Treat Them
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Chances are that if you havent experienced one yourself, you at least know someone whos had a stomach ulcer at one point or another. Estimates show that about 500,000 new cases of peptic ulcers are reported each year in the U.S. alone, and at any given time about 5 million people are affected. In addition, one in 10 adults can expect to deal with painful ulcers at one point or another.
For many years, doctors thought that high amounts of stress alone could cause a stomach ulcer to form by increasing production of stomach acid. But then research emerged in the 1980s showing that frequent use of anti-inflammatory drugs , a poor lifestyle, and especially a type of bacterial infection caused by the strain Helicobacter pylori are the real culprits of the majority of ulcers.
Fortunately, according to an article published in The Lancet, prevalence of H. pylori infection and peptic ulcer diseases have become substantially less prevalent than they were two decades ago.
Wondering how to treat a stomach ulcer if youve already developed one? Below well cover much more about stomach ulcer treatments including medications, stress management and dietary changes.
When To See A Doctor
Anyone who thinks they may have an ulcer in their stomach should consult their doctor. Any stomach symptoms that last for more than a few days or keep happening need evaluation and treatment.
A slow-bleeding ulcer can be signaled by symptoms of anemia, such as being tired and breathless. More serious bleeding is an urgent medical problem and can be signaled if blood is vomited up, or stools are black and sticky.
Perforation, or a hole in the stomach, 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 Peptic Ulcers Are Treated
A peptic ulcer is a sore or lesion that forms in the lining of the stomach or duodenum, the first part of the small intestine. Peptic ulcers are caused by Helicobacter pylori , a bacterium that lives in the mucous lining of the stomach and intestine. Symptoms of these ulcers include pain, discomfort, heartburn, nausea, or gas, though some people may not experience any symptoms at all.
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.
A peptic ulcer is one of the most common gastrointestinal tract issues seen by healthcare providers an estimated 5% to 10% of all people will experience one in their lifetime.
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How Is An Ulcer Diagnosed
Your doctor will ask you about your symptoms. They may do an endoscopy. This procedure involves inserting a thin, flexible tube attached to a camera down your throat and into your stomach. Your doctor will test your blood, breath or stool for H. pylori. They also can test a sample of your stomach lining. Your doctor also will ask you if you regularly take aspirin or anti-inflammatory medicines.
Does Cannabis Help Stomach Ulcers
There is also some evidence that cannabis may help to protect the stomach from ulcers. It all surrounds something known as the endocannabinoid system . The ECS is a regulatory system present in most of the bodys tissues, including the digestive tract. It includes cell receptors, known as CB1 and CB2, and chemicals called endocannabinoids.
A 2016 review for Current Neuropharmacology explains that there are high levels of these receptors and chemicals in the digestive system. They play a role in controlling inflammation and protecting the lining of the stomach and intestines from damage.
The ECS is where the active compounds in cannabis exert their actions. For example, THC has a similar molecular shape to one of our natural endocannabinoids, anandamide. This allows it to bind with the same receptors, especially CB1.
In recent years, interest in medical marijuana for digestive issues has increased.
When it binds with CB1 receptors in the brain, THC produces the psychedelic high that has made cannabis so infamous. However, in the digestive system, it has very different effects.
It reduces gastric acid production and slows the rate at which the stomach empties. Because of this decrease in gastric acid, cannabis, in theory, may help offer a sort of protection if an ulcer has formed.
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Gastritis Or Ulcer No Antibiotic Treatment
Gastritis is irritation and inflammation of the stomach lining. This means the lining is red and swollen. It can cause shallow sores in the stomach lining called erosions. An ulcer is a deeper open sore in the lining of the stomach. It may also occur in the first part of the small intestine . The causes and symptoms of gastritis and ulcers are very similar.
Causes and risk factors for both problems can include:
Long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as aspirin and ibuprofen
H. pylori bacteria infection
Certain other conditions such as immune disorders, certain medicines and street drugs
Symptoms for both problems can include:
Dull or burning pain in the upper part of the belly
Loss of appetite
Nausea with or without vomiting
You likely had an evaluation to help find the exact cause and extent of your problem. This may have included a health history, exam, and certain tests.
Results showed that your problem is not due to H. pylori infection. For this reason, you don’t need antibiotics as part of your treatment.
Whether your problem is gastritis or an ulcer, you will still need to take other medicines, however. You will also need to follow instructions to help reduce stomach irritation so your stomach can heal.
How Do Doctors Treat An Nsaid
If NSAIDs are causing your peptic ulcer and you dont have an H. pylori infection, your doctor may tell you to
- stop taking the NSAID
- reduce how much of the NSAID you take
- switch to another medicine that wont cause a peptic ulcer
Your doctor may also prescribe medicines to reduce stomach acid and coat and protect your peptic ulcer. Proton pump inhibitors , histamine receptor blockers, and protectants can help relieve pain and help your ulcer heal.
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