What Happens After Treatment
A repeat gastroscopy is usually advised a few weeks after treatment has finished. This is mainly to check that the ulcer has healed. It is also to be doubly certain that the ‘ulcer’ was not due to stomach cancer. If your ulcer was caused by H. pylori then a test is advised to check that the H. pylori infection has gone. This is done at least four weeks after the course of combination therapy has finished.
Youre More Bloated Than Usual
If you notice your stomach feeling particularly bloated, it may be more serious than a little bit of gasit could be one of the signs of an ulcer. According to RM Healthy, bloating is often one of the earliest ulcer symptoms, with patients especially complaining of pain in their midsection. Of course, bloating can also be caused simply by eating something your body doesnt agree with or not drinking enough water, but when combined with these other symptoms, its worth checking out.
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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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When Should I Go To Er
Seek emergency care if you have:
- Severe pain that doesnt go away.
- Signs of blood in your poop or bloody vomit.
- Signs of severe blood loss, such as paleness and faintness.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Stomach ulcers are common and treatable, but they should be taken seriously. Even when they dont cause symptoms, they arent a good sign. A stomach ulcer means that your natural stomach acid is overwhelming your protective stomach lining. Thats a situation that can only get worse if it isnt managed. Lifestyle changes may help, but youll still need to treat the underlying cause. Its probably either NSAID use or a common bacterial infection. Your healthcare provider can help prescribe the right medicines for your condition.
Remedies And Treatments For Stomach Pain And Gas
Most stomach pain and gas will go away on its own, but there are steps you can take to ease discomfort and prevent future gas pain. Gas-related stomach pain remedies include:
The only way to get rid of gas is to pass it. Donât hold it in. If youâre worried about odor, try reducing foods that contain sulfur-producing compounds such as broccoli, cabbage, and beer.
Many gas-relieving products are marketed, but scientific evidence of their effectiveness is limited. Many people claim to experience relief, so they may be worth trying. The most common medications that claim to relieve immediate symptoms are activated charcoal and simethicone .
Peppermint and peppermint oil have the best record as digestive aids, but there are many other foods that may help. In one study, Chinese herbal formulae outperformed placebos in soothing IBS symptoms. Commonly included ingredients are:
- Wearing ill-fitting dentures
Enzymes Before Eating Certain Foods
Taking enzymes before you eat can help you better digest your meal. Most enzymes are only available for those with a medical condition that prevents them from producing their own. However, two widely available enzymes for problematic foods are:
- Lactase supplements can help those who are lactose intolerant.
- Alpha-galactosidase supplements can help people digest legumes.
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Symptoms Of A Duodenal Ulcer
If you have a duodenal ulcer, you might:
- have pain in the stomach or abdomen
- have indigestion
- feel very full and bloated after eating
- feel like you might vomit
- lose weight
Very occasionally, an ulcer can cause serious complications. Go to the emergency department if:
- you have a sharp pain in your stomach that doesn’t go away
- your vomit or stools look bloody or a black colour
If you are concerned about symptoms, you can use healthdirect’s online Symptom Checker to get advice on the next appropriate healthcare steps and when to seek medical attention.
How Can I Prevent A Stomach Ulcer From Occurring Or Returning
- Reduce NSAID use, if possible. Consider whether acetaminophen might substitute. If you take NSAIDs for medical reasons, talk to your doctor about reducing your dosage or switching your medication. Your doctor may also prescribe another medicine to take with NSAIDs to protect your stomach lining.
- Reduce other irritants that may contribute to too much stomach acid or erode your stomach lining, including smoking and alcohol use.
- Take an H. pylori breath test to find out if you have an overgrowth of the bacteria.
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Wheres Your Abdominal Bloating And Pain
Pain in different areas of the abdomen can mean different things.
Abdominal pain can be anywhere between the chest and the pelvis. People often call it a stomachache. The pain can also be:
Causes of abdominal bloating and pain can vary from mild to severe. Most of the time, abdominal bloating and pain occur due to:
This kind of bloating or pain is usually normal and will go away within two hours.
In cases of the stomach flu, you may feel intense pain or bloating that comes and goes before each episode of vomiting or diarrhea. Stomach viruses usually go away with rest and home care.
This guide lists the organs associated with different locations of abdominal bloating or pain:
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When To Call A Healthcare Provider
While stomach ulcers can be painful and uncomfortable, they’re rarely life-threatening. But if you notice changes in appetite, unexplained weight loss, vomiting blood, dark black or bloody stools, or trouble breathing, call a healthcare provider or seek immediate medical attention. These serious symptoms could be signs of perforation , internal bleeding, or a blockage, which all require emergency care.
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Can Stomach Ulcers Just Go Away
Some ulcers follow a chronic pattern of healing temporarily on their own and then returning. This might happen if the factors contributing to your ulcer, such as NSAID use, smoking and alcohol, are temporarily reduced and then resumed. You wont completely heal your ulcer until you eliminate the cause, whether that is chronic NSAID use, H. pylori infection or an overactive stomach. Even after successful treatment, you can get another ulcer.
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What Causes Alcohol Gastritis
Alcohol Gastritis is a type of acute gastritis and is caused by excessive alcohol consumption. The sudden inflammation of the stomach lining can be very painful and cause severe stomach cramping, irritability and vomiting. While consuming too much alcohol is the main cause of Alcohol Gastritis, it often develops in connection with some sort of infection, direct irritation or localized tissue damage. It can be caused by:
- taking non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory medications like aspirin or ibuprofen .
- certain bacterial infections.
- bile reflux from proximal small intestine.
- autoimmune disorders.
While these are the chief causes of the condition, there are other activities and circumstances that can contribute to the irritation, including stress, smoking and caffeine intake. If you wait to see a doctor for alcohol gastritis symptoms and continue to drink the more likely it may lead to permanent damage to the stomach and digestive system.
Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is an increase in the number of bacteria or a change in the type of bacteria in your small intestine. These bacteria can produce extra gas and may also cause diarrhea and weight loss. Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is most often a complication of other health conditions.
Specialist Answers On Digestive Health Issues
Q1. Every time I eat, I have horrible gas and excessive bloating. Are these the signs of an ulcer?
The most common sign of an ulcer is a burning pain that is either made better by eating or aggravated between one and three hours after a meal, when food can no longer neutralize the acid produced by the stomach. Other ulcer symptoms include vomiting, gastrointestinal bleeding, and severe abdominal pain or bloating, brought on by a penetrating ulcer that has perforated and needs emergency surgical repair. Horrible gas and excessive bloating are more likely to be associated with gallstone-related disease, dyspepsia, or irritable bowel syndrome. I advise you to see your doctor and discuss your symptoms so you can be properly diagnosed.
Upper gastrointestinal Crohns disease is rare and only seen in less than 5 percent of Crohns disease patients. While ulcers in the stomach may be due to Crohns disease, more commonly they are due to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug use or to infection with bacteria called Helicobacter pylori. The biopsies taken of the normal tissue next to the ulcers were done to rule out H. pylori.
If H. pylori has been ruled out and you are not taking NSAIDs, then it is reasonable to assume that Crohns disease is the cause of the ulcers. Upper gastrointestinal Crohns disease is best treated with proton-pump inhibitors, like the Prevacid that you are taking, and anti-inflammatory medications, like the Humira and Imuran you are taking.
Fern, New Jersey
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Symptoms Of Stomach Ulcers
A number of symptoms are associated with stomach ulcers. The severity of the symptoms depends on the severity of the ulcer.
The most common symptom is a burning sensation or pain in the middle of your abdomen between your chest and belly button. Typically, the pain will be more intense when your stomach is empty, and it can last for a few minutes to several hours.
Other common signs and symptoms of ulcers include:
- dull pain in the stomach
- weight loss
- heartburn, which is a burning sensation in the chest)
- pain that may improve when you eat, drink, or take antacids
- anemia, whose symptoms can include tiredness, shortness of breath, or paler skin
- dark, tarry stools
- vomit thats bloody or looks like coffee grounds
Talk to your doctor if you have any symptoms of a stomach ulcer. Even though discomfort may be mild, ulcers can worsen if they arent treated. Bleeding ulcers can become life-threatening.
What Is The Treatment For Gastritis
Gastritis treatment will depend on the cause of the condition. If it was caused by anti-inflammatory drugs or alcohol, it can be relieved by stopping use of the substance. If medication is required to treat the condition, you may be prescribed antibiotics to kill H. pylori bacteria. You may also need an acid blocker to reduce acid production, proton pump inhibitors to promote healing, antacids to neutralize stomach acid, or a combination of these medications.
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Pain from a stomach ulcer can travel, radiating to the back or chest. If the ulcer has penetrated through the bowel wall, the pain can become more intense, longer in duration, and harder to alleviate, says Ravella. Ulcers can also cause perforation , in which case you may experience sudden and severe stomach pain that continually gets worseand should head to the ER, stat.
If youre not experiencing symptoms that require urgent medical attention, set up a time to chat with your doctor about the best course of action is. If theres a high suspicion for an ulcer, you may be advised to undergo an upper endoscopy to formally diagnose and treat it accordingly, says Balzora. Ulcers are primarily treated with acid-lowering medicationsand, if H. pylori is detected, a round of antibiotics.
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.
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What Tests Will Be Done To Diagnose A Peptic Ulcer
Endoscopy. An upper endoscopy exam is expedient because allows healthcare providers to see inside your digestive tract and also take a tissue sample to analyze in the lab. The test is done by passing a thin tube with a tiny camera attached down your throat and into your stomach and duodenum. Youll have medication to numb your throat and help you relax during the test. Your healthcare provider may use the endoscope to take a tissue sample to test for signs of mucous damage, anemia, H. pylori infection or malignancy. If they take a sample, you wont feel it.
Imaging tests. Imaging tests to look inside the stomach and small intestine include:
- Upper GI series. An upper GI X-ray exam examines the stomach and duodenum through X-rays. Its less invasive than an endoscopy. For the X-ray, youll swallow a chalky fluid called barium, which will coat your esophagus, stomach and duodenum. The barium helps your digestive organs show up better in black and white images.
- CT scan. Your healthcare provider might recommend a CT scan if they need to see your organs in more detail. A CT scan can show complications such as a perforation in the stomach or intestinal wall. For the test, youll lie on a table inside a scanner machine while X-rays are taken. You may drink or have an injection with contrast fluid to make your organs show up better in images.
Tests for H. pylori. Your healthcare provider might want to test you separately for H. pylori infection. Tests may include:
Causes Of Peptic Ulcers
Peptic ulcers are mostly caused by the overuse of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications or an unresolved infection of the bacteria called H. pylori.
An infection with H. pylori triggers an inflammatory response in the bodys mucosal immune system, affecting the degradation of the epithelial layer cells. A similar mucosal injury is also caused by the use of NSAIDs through several mechanisms.
These injured areas develop into peptic ulcers upon contact with gastric acid.
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You Bleed When You Use The Bathroom
Blood coming from the gastrointestinal tract can signal a variety of underlying health issues, but Dr. Sengupta says when this bleeding is combined with upper abdominal pain, hes highly suspicious that its one of the signs of an ulcer. Many patients notice this blood either when vomiting, or when using the bathroom, as their stools may appear black. If you notice youre suffering from a bleeding GI tract, along with nausea and pain in the stomach or chest, Dr. Sengupta says doctors will often perform a blood test or an upper endoscopywhere they use a camera to look into the stomach itselfto check if an ulcer is the culprit. Blood in your stool can also be due to hemorrhoids or a symptom of colon cancer, so its a good idea to get checked out by your doctor.
What Is Peptic Ulcer Disease
Peptic ulcer disease is a condition with an open sore or ulcer in the lining of the stomach or duodenum, the first part of the small intestine. The main symptom is burning pain in the upper part of the belly after meals. Other symptoms are heartburn, burping, bloating and nausea. The symptoms of a peptic ulcer usually worsen over time. Peptic ulcers can lead to bleeding, a hole in the bowel and other medical emergencies. These complications may cause symptoms which start suddenly.The treatment of peptic ulcer disease depends on the cause. Once the cause is recognized and treated, the outlook is usually good.
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If Your Ulcer Was Caused By An Anti
If possible, you should stop taking the anti-inflammatory medicine. This allows the ulcer to heal. You will also normally be prescribed an acid-suppressing medicine for several weeks. This stops the stomach from making acid and allows the ulcer to heal. However, in many cases, the anti-inflammatory medicine is needed to ease symptoms of arthritis or other painful conditions, or aspirin is needed to protect against blood clots. In these situations, one option is to take an acid-suppressing medicine each day indefinitely. This reduces the amount of acid made by the stomach and greatly reduces the chance of an ulcer forming again.