A peptic ulcer is a sore that forms in the stomach lining, lower esophagus or small intestine. It typically forms due to inflammation brought about by the H. pylori bacteria Child Care and erosion from stomach acid.
What are the signs?
The characteristic sign of peptic ulcer is burning abdominal pain that radiates from the navel to the chest which ranges from mild to severe. In some instances, the discomfort can wake up the individual at night. A small peptic ulcer will not trigger any symptoms in the early stages.
Other usual indications of a peptic ulcer include:
- Appetite changes
- Dark or blood-streaked stools
- Unexplained weight loss
- Chest pain
Management of a peptic ulcer
The treatment for a peptic ulcer is based on the underlying cause. If the tests reveal that there is an H. pylori infection, a combination of medications are given. These medications are taken for up to 2 weeks. The medications include antibiotics to get rid of the infection and proton pump inhibitors to lessen the stomach acid.
If a H. pylori infection is confirmed, the doctor will suggest a prescription or over-the-counter PPI for up to 8 weeks to lessen the stomach acid and allow the ulcer to heal.
Acid blockers such as famotidine or ranitidine can also help reduce the stomach acid and pain. In some cases, the doctor might prescribe sucralfate which coasts the stomach and lessen the symptoms.