10 Peptic Ulcer Symptoms

By jolene
Reviewed: Dr. Mera
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Peptic ulcer disease (PUD) occurs when there is a break in the stomach lining, lower esophagus, or first part of the small intestine. An ulcer that occurs in the stomach is called a gastric ulcer, while one in the first part of the intestines is a duodenal ulcer. The commonest causes of PUD are the bacteria Helicobacter pylori and the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)i.e. ibuprofen, naproxen. Other contributing factors include tobacco smoking, severe physiologic stress, unknown genetic factors, and hypersecretory states (i.e. Zollinger-Ellison syndrome). PUD might lead to complications in approximately 20-25% of patients, such as bleeding, obstruction of the stomach, and perforation.

The diagnosis of PUD can be confirmed with an endoscopy. A chest radiograph can be useful to detect perforation. A Helicobacter pylori infection can be confirmed by testing the blood for antibodies, testing the stool for the bacteria, a urea breath test, or a biopsy of stomach tissue. The treatment and management of the disease involve quitting smoking, stopping the use of NSAIDs, avoiding alcohol intake, and taking medications (such as a protein pump inhibitor i.e. omeprazole or an H2 receptor blocker i.e. famotidine) to lower the production of stomach acid. Bleeding peptic ulcers can be treated through endoscopic procedures.

Approximately 4 percent of the global population have peptic ulcers. In 2015, peptic ulcers resulted in 267,500 deaths and about 87.4 million individuals had new ulcers. Approximately 10 percent of people develop an ulcer at some point in life.

Symptom #1: Upper Abdominal Pain

One of the most common symptoms of a gastric or duodenal ulcer is pain in the upper abdomen that occurs in the middle of the night or pain that improves or worsens after eating. The pain is often described as a dull ache or burning sensation. Most patients find relief after taking antacids orally.

Peptic Ulcer

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