How Is A Stomach Ulcer Treated
Treatment for stomach ulcers usually involves a combination of medications which reduce acid secretion, protect the mucosa, and kill H. pylori bacteria .
This allows ulcers to heal and reduces the chance of them will come back. All medications should be taken exactly as prescribed.
Examples of medications that may be considered to treat stomach ulcers include:
- Antibiotics to kill H. pylori
- H2 receptor blockers that reduce stomach acid production
- Proton pump inhibitors to block stomach acid production
- Protectants that coat the ulcer and protect it against acid and enzymes, enhancing healing
- Bismuth .
Rarely, surgery may be needed.
If NSAIDs have caused your stomach ulcer, your doctor may advise you to stop taking them, reduce their dosage, or switch to an alternative medicine. Follow his/her advice. Talk to your doctor before taking antacids as these may reduce the absorption of some other medications.
What Causes Gastric Ulcers
Peptic ulcers is an infection caused by h pylori bacteria. It results in erosion of the stomach lining mucosa or small intestine, which occurs as a result of increased acidity in the gut, resulting in sores.
The most common bacteria that cause ulcers is called Helicobacter pylori . It acts on the inner lining of the breadbasket accelerated by the acidity of the gut contents.
Excessive use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can cause this condition . NSAIDs are drugs frequently prescribed to treat pain, fever, and inflammation.
Smoking, uncontrolled stress, spices, and alcohol all increase the risk of duodenal ulcers by irritating the stomach lining mucosa and increasing acid production.
Chewing gums and snaking between meals are also linked to development of ulcers. To heal ulcer you must avoid this substances.
Home Remedies For Ulcer Pain
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How Are Peptic Ulcers Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will look at your past health and give you a physical exam. You may also have some tests.
Imaging tests used to diagnose ulcers include:
- Upper GI series or barium swallow. This test looks at the organs of the top part of your digestive system. It checks your food pipe , stomach, and the first part of the small intestine . You will swallow a metallic fluid called barium. Barium coats the organs so that they can be seen on an X-ray.
- Upper endoscopy or EGD . This test looks at the lining of your esophagus, stomach, and duodenum. It uses a thin lighted tube called an endoscope. The tube has a camera at one end. The tube is put into your mouth and throat. Then it goes into your esophagus, stomach, and duodenum. Your health care provider can see the inside of these organs. A small tissue sample can be taken. This can be checked for H. pylori.
You may also have the following lab tests to see if you have an H. pylori infection:
How Do You Diagnose Stomach Ulcers
You should see a doctor if your symptoms arent resolving, or if over-the-counter antacids are only working temporarily.
When evaluating patients for stomach ulcers, our gastroenterologists start by taking a detailed patient history and a review of symptoms. Tests we may use to diagnose stomach ulcers include:
- Upper endoscopy, in which the gastroenterologist inserts a special endoscope into the patients mouth to inspect the stomach for ulcers
- Blood, breath, or stool tests to screen for H. pylori
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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.
Stomach Ulcer: Risk Factors
Certain lifestyle parameters can lead to the development of an ulcer.
So it is for:
Your physician will first perform a physical examination looking for bloating and abdominal pain.
To confirm the diagnosis, he prescribes an endoscopy.
It is a long tube with a camera that is introduced through the throat to explore the stomach and the small intestine.
If an ulcer is detected, a small swab is taken for laboratory examination.
A barium transit, an X-ray performed after ingestion of a contrast product, can also be performed to explore with precision.
Your physician may also recommend a stool or blood test to determine if you are infected with Helicobacter pylori bacteria.
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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
What Causes A Stomach Ulcer
Most peptic ulcers are caused by the bacteria Helicobacter Pylori or H Pylori.
Researchers believe that this bacteria enters the body through contaminated food, water, or contact with an infected person.
Once in the body, it lodges in the mucus layer of the stomach or duodenum.
The more it grows, the more it damages the mucus, leaving stomach acid to attack the walls of the stomach and duodenum.
Bacteria and gastric acidity together cause an ulcer.
Some ulcers are linked to excessive use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and ibuprofen.
These drugs reduce the ability of the stomach and duodenum to protect themselves from acidic effects.
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If You Forget To Take It
If you usually take pantoprazole:
- once a day take the missed dose as soon as you remember, unless your next dose is due in less than 12 hours in which case skip the missed dose and take the next one at the usual time
- twice a day take the missed dose as soon as you remember, unless your next dose is due in less than 4 hours in which case skip the missed dose and take the next one at the usual time
Never take a double dose to make up for a forgotten one.
If you often forget doses, it may help to set an alarm to remind you. You could also ask your pharmacist for advice on other ways to remember to take your medicine.
Complications Of Peptic Ulcer
When you linger long with peptic ulcer without treatment, you may develop the following health complications.
Duodenal ulcer sometimes leads to bleeding. The high loss of blood may lead to anemia. In instances where this stage is reached emergency precautions should be takes. You need to seek medical attention before settling for the use of remedies.
The ulcer hinders effective movement of food within the belly making you feel full faster.
In severe cases, the ulcers form holes on the lining of the stomach wall. The wounds that are caused on the gut walls can lead to bacterial infection to the delicate internal organs.
Risk of gastric Cancer
According to medical research, H pylori infections increase the risk of gastric cancers.
How to prevent peptic ulcers?
There are measures that you can adopt to help prevent ulcers. A doctor before administering medications and antibiotics will advice on healthy practices for your body. Here are some ways to prevent ulcers and obtain good health.
Personal hygiene to avoid H pylori infection.
Eat a healthy diet that are properly cooked.
Avoid pain relievers and NSAIDs.
Avoid acidic servings
Avoid fermented foods
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.
What Tests Diagnose A Peptic Ulcer
To confirm a person has an ulcer a diagnostic imaging test will usually be ordered. The two most widely used tests are:
- Upper GI series : This is a type of X-ray. The patient is given a chalky liquid to drink that increases the contrast on the X-ray, making certain features easier to see. Because this liquid contains barium, this test is sometimes called a barium swallow.
- Endoscopy : An endoscope is a thin, flexible tube with a tiny camera at the end. The patient is given a mild sedative, and then the tube is passed through the mouth into the stomach. The doctor can see the lining of the stomach to diagnose a peptic ulcer. Tiny samples of the tissue will be taken , which are examined under a microscope.
If a diagnostic imaging test reveals an ulcer, the patient will most likely have a test to see if H pylori bacteria are present.
- It is important to be certain about this, because treatment of the H pylori is likely to heal the ulcer.
- Ulcers caused by H pylori are treated differently than ulcers caused by medications.
Three types of tests are available to detect H pylori.
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Stomach Ulcers Can Be Handled At Home But Be Careful
As you can see, there are many home remedies that can be used to care for the pain and damage that a stomach ulcer can cause. Although there are more remedies out there, we believe that the ones weve mentioned here are the best ones to help treat your ulcer.
But with that in mind, stomach ulcers can become a serious medical issue. If your ulcer isnt getting any better or if it gets worse while youre taking one of these home remedies, consult your doctor to make sure that everything is okay. He or she may recommend a more effective treatment depending on your condition.
What Causes Stomach Ulcers
The two most common causes are:
- H. pylori infection. This common bacterial infection affects up to half of people worldwide. It primarily lives in the stomach. In many people, it doesnt seem to cause problems. Their gut immune systems keep it in check. But a portion of those infected have H. pylori overgrowth. The bacteria continue to multiply, eating into the stomach lining and causing chronic inflammation and peptic ulcer disease. H. pylori infection is associated with about 60% of duodenal ulcers and 40% of gastric ulcers.
- Overuse of NSAIDs. NSAID stands for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug.” These include common over-the-counter pain relief medications such as ibuprofen, naproxen and aspirin. NSAIDs contribute to ulcers in several ways. They irritate the stomach lining on contact and repress some of the chemicals that defend and repair the mucous lining. Up to 30% of people who take NSAIDs regularly develop peptic ulcers. Up to 50% of all peptic ulcers are caused by the overuse of NSAIDs.
Less common causes of stomach ulcers include:
- Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome. This is a rare condition that causes your stomach to produce too much gastric acid.
- Severe physiological stress. Severe illness, burns or injuries can produce stress ulcers in the stomach. Physiological stress changes your bodys PH balance, increasing stomach acid. Stress ulcers develop very quickly in response to stress, unlike normal stomach ulcers that develop gradually.
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How Is A Stomach Ulcer Diagnosed
To help diagnose a stomach ulcer, your doctor will ask you what medications you take or have been taking, and if you have had a peptic ulcer or any other relevant condition in the past. Make sure you mention all the medications you are taking, especially NSAIDs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, diclofenac, or ketorolac.
Your doctor will also conduct a physical examination, to check for bloating or lumps within your abdomen, and to listen for bowel sounds. Make sure you mention any areas of pain or tenderness.
Blood may also be taken to test for infection or anemia and testing may also be conducted for Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria commonly associated with stomach ulcers. Testing usually involves either a breath test, stool sample, or biopsy. To get a clear picture of the inside of your stomach and small intestines, doctors may use an endoscope , a series of X-rays and/or a CT scan.
Natural Home Remedies For Stomach Ulcers
Severe stomach ulcers are the sores that occur on the lining of the stomach. Its primarily caused by H pylori bacteria. Peptic ulcer as its also called can be excruciatingly painful and may bleed. When these sore develop in the small intestine its termed duodenal ulcer.
If you have a stomach ulcer, your doctor may advise you to take an antacid or pain reliever. These medications will only offer instant relief but with no long time effects on the ulcer. For both instant and future prevention, you can try some home remedies to relieve the burning and pain caused by ulcer.
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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.
Herbal Remedies That Help
You may have learned how to cure stomach ulcer permanently by changing your diet, but you can also try some herbal remedies to get better results. Here are some suggestions:
Regular use of licorice may also help treat your stomach ulcers. Licorice is beneficial because it contains compounds beneficial for the lining of the stomach. You can make a cup of licorice tea for relief or even make licorice juice to treat stomach ulcers.
2. Slippery Elm
Slippery elm bark can help treat your stomach ulcers because it helps reduce acidity in your stomach. Simply take the slippery elm bark and grind it to make a fine powder. Consume this powder on a daily basis until you find some relief.
This is a beneficial herb for anyone interested in learning how to cure stomach ulcer permanently. Just take the calendula and dry it. Then, use it to make a cup of calendula tea and drink it regularly for relief.
4. Yellow Root
Ulcers could be the result of the bacterium called H. pylori. It irritates the stomach lining and aggravates your condition. You may benefit from yellow root because it has antibiotic properties. You may also notice some relief from the burning sensation that is usually associated with ulcers.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Any Complications
Stomach ulcers can cause various complications but these are much less common now because of more effective treatments. However, complications can be very serious and include:
Bleeding from the ulcer
- This can range from a ‘trickle’ to a life-threatening bleed.
- If there is sudden heavy bleeding then this will cause you to vomit blood and make you feel very faint.
- Less sudden bleeding may cause you to vomit and the vomit looks coffee-coloured because the stomach acid has partly broken down the blood.
- A more gradual trickle of blood will pass through your gut and cause your stools to look very dark in colour or even black .
PerforationThis is the term used to describe the ulcer having gone all the way through the wall of the stomach. Food and acid in the stomach then leak out of the stomach. This usually causes severe pain and makes you very unwell. Stomach perforation is a medical emergency and needs hospital treatment as soon as possible.
Stomach blockageThis is now rare. An ulcer at the end of the stomach can cause the outlet of the stomach to narrow and cause an obstruction. This can cause frequent severe vomiting.
How Are Peptic Ulcers Treated
Treatment will depend on the type of ulcer you have. Your healthcare provider will create a care plan for you based on what is causing your ulcer.
Treatment can include making lifestyle changes, taking medicines, or in some cases having surgery.
Lifestyle changes may include:
- Not eating certain foods. Avoid any foods that make your symptoms worse.
- Quitting smoking. Smoking can keep your ulcer from healing. It is also linked to ulcers coming back after treatment.
- Limiting alcohol and caffeine. They can make your symptoms worse.
- Not using NSAIDs . These include aspirin and ibuprofen.
Medicines to treat ulcers may include:
- Antibiotics. These bacteria-fighting medicines are used to kill the H. pylori bacteria. Often a mix of antibiotics and other medicines is used to cure the ulcer and get rid of the infection.
- H2-blockers . These reduce the amount of acid your stomach makes by blocking the hormone histamine. Histamine helps to make acid.
- Proton pump inhibitors or PPIs. These lower stomach acid levels and protect the lining of your stomach and duodenum.
- Mucosal protective agents. These medicines protect the stomach’s mucus lining from acid damage so that it can heal.
- Antacids. These quickly weaken or neutralize stomach acid to ease your symptoms.
In most cases, medicines can heal ulcers quickly. Once the H. pylori bacteria is removed, most ulcers do not come back.
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