A stomach ulcer is described as a sore in the stomach lining. It is important to note that the stomach lining is responsible for protecting the stomach against the gastric acid and digestive juices. Once this protective barrier breaks down, the stomach acid can impair the walls of the stomach and result to the formation of an ulcer.
A stomach ulcer is likely to form if:
- The Helicobacter pylori bacteria is present where it can infect the stomach and lead to the weakening of the stomach.
- Regularly using non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
- Excess production of stomach acid
What are the signs?
The usual indications include:
- Burning sensation or dull achiness in the abdomen that comes and goes, arises soon after eating or 2-3 hours later, manifests in the middle of the night when the stomach is empty or settles when eating something
- Appetite loss
- Burping and bloating
- Weight loss
- Feeling sick in the stomach and vomiting
- Black or blood-streaked stools
- Vomiting that is streaked with blood or appear as coffee grounds
Management of a stomach ulcer
If diagnosed with a stomach ulcer, it can be treated, and any complications can be prevented. It also prevents the development of another ulcer.
In most cases, the doctor will prescribe:
- Antibiotics to deal with the H. pylori bacteria
- Drugs to reduce the acid in the stomach
- Medications that coat and protect the stomach and intestinal lining from the gastric acid
The individual might be hospitalized if the symptoms are severe. If there is excessive bleeding, hole in the stomach wall or an obstruction in the intestines or stomach, surgical intervention is necessary.