Dr. Priyanka Udawat is Gastroenterologist, Hepatologist & Liver Transplant Physician, Certified Yoga Instructor, Mind-Body Medicine consultant and Healthy Lifestyle Coach & Naturopathy Consultant with leading clinics and hospitals in Mumbai.
Peptic ulcer disease is when painful sores form in the lining of the stomach, duodenum (start of the small intestine) or bowels.
An ulcer can cause belly pain and, in some cases, bleeding or even a hole in the stomach or bowel.
The most common causes of ulcers are :
An infection of the stomach lining with Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), a type of bacteria.
Painful fullness after a meal.
Overuse of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin or ibuprofen.
Ulcers often get better with antibiotics, acid-blocking medicines and not using NSAIDs.
Not treating an ulcer can lead to other health issues.
About four million Americans have peptic ulcer disease.
The most common symptom of an ulcer is a burning pain in your stomach between your breastbone and your belly button.
You may often feel this pain when your stomach is empty (often between meals), but it can happen at any time — even during the night.
The pain could last from a few minutes to many hours and may sometimes wake you in the middle of the night.
Stomach pain is often reduced by food, fluids or taking antacids.
While not as common as stomach pain, other symptoms could be :
Throwing up blood.
Blood in the stool (black stool).
Loss of appetite.
Anemia (low iron in your blood, which can make you feel weak and tired), when an ulcer bleeds without being treated.
Experts have found that many ulcers are caused by infection with the Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) bacteria — not spicy food or stress.
Another common cause of peptic ulcer disease is the routine use of pain medications called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). People often take NSAIDs to help with aches, pains and swelling. Examples of the drugs that can cause peptic ulcer disease are: