Gastric Ulcers

By: Katalina Tavarez

What are Gastric Ulcers?

Gastric Ulcers are holes in the lining of the stomach corroded by the acidic digestive juices which are secreted by the stomach cells.

Signs/Symptoms include:

  • a burning sensation or pain in the area between your chest & belly button
  • weight loss
  • burping
  • loss of appetite due to pain

Some causes of this disease are:

  • An infection with the bacterium Helicobacter Pylori
  • Smoking
  • Frequent us of steroids (such as those used for treating asthma)

Diagnosis

Doctors will diagnose their patient by reviewing the patients medical history, having a blood, stool or breath test ordered, and/or having an endoscopy (which is looking inside the body using an instrument called an endoscope to examine the interior of a hollow organ or cavity in the body) done.

There are two ways to treat a Gastric Ulcers:

1. Nonsurgical Treatments:

  • Doctor might prescribe antibiotics to kill the bacteria
  • In mild cases, an over-the-counter antacid can provide temporary relief


2. Surgical Treatments:
  • if an ulcer is bleeding internally
  • if the ulcer is cancerous
  • has caused a perforation
  • surgery is an option in rare cases

Prognosis

Basically if you take the proper medication, it can take care of the ulcer. In serious cases, surgery is done and if surgery is done quickly, the outcome is usually good.
References

  1. N.A. (2013). "Definition of Gastric Ulcer". Retrieved from: www.medicinenet.com
  2. Johnson, S. (2012). "Stomach Ulcer". Retrieved from: www.healthline.com