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Peptic Ulcer

Peptic Ulcer: Introduction

A peptic ulcer is a hole in the lining of the stomach or the duodenum of the small intestine. There are two types of peptic ulcers. They include a gastric ulcer, which is a peptic ulcer in the stomach. A duodenal ulcer is a peptic ulcer in the duodenum, the first section of the small intestine.

Peptic ulcer is a common condition. Peptic ulcers form when the lining of protective mucus and other substances break down, which allows acidic digestive juices to damage the stomach or duodenal lining.

Peptic ulcer is frequently caused by an infection of a type of bacteria called Helicobacter pylori. Other causes of peptic ulcer include long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve), which are irritating to the stomach lining. Peptic ulcer can also occur after within a few days after a physically stressful event, such as an illness, surgery or injury, and result in peptic ulcers that can bleed. Peptic ulcer can also be caused by a stomach tumor or pancreas tumor. Smoking is a risk factor for developing a peptic ulcer.

Typical symptoms of peptic ulcer include heartburn and pain in the upper abdominal area. If left untreated peptic ulcer can lead to complications, including life-threatening complications. For more details about symptoms and complications, see symptoms of peptic ulcer.

Diagnosing peptic ulcer and its root cause begins with taking a thorough personal and family medical history, including symptoms, and completing a physical examination.

Diagnostic testing generally includes an endoscopy procedure. In this procedure, a special lighted instrument is inserted through the mouth and throat into the stomach. This instrument, called an endoscope, takes pictures of the stomach and/or sends images to a computer monitor.

A biopsy may also be taken during an endoscopy. A biopsy involves taking a small sample of esophagus or stomach tissue to examine it under a microscope.

Blood tests may also be done to test for a Helicobacter pylori infection, the most common cause of peptic ulcer. A stool sample may be tested to determine if there is blood in the stool, which could indicate that there is a perforated peptic ulcer that is bleeding or a variety of other conditions.

Diagnosis may also include a complete blood count, which can determine if anemia is present and may indicate that a peptic ulcer has become a perorated ulcer and is bleeding.

A diagnosis of peptic ulcer and its cause can be delayed or missed because symptoms of peptic ulcer may be intermittent and for other reasons. For information on misdiagnosis, refer to misdiagnosis of peptic ulcer.

Treatment of peptic ulcer involves reducing the amount of stomach acid so that the stomach or duodenum can heal. Surgery may be required in severe cases. For more information on treatment, refer to treatment of peptic ulcer. ...more »

Peptic Ulcer: Peptic ulcers are an inflammation of the stomach or duodenal lining. Once believed to be caused by spicy food and stress, these have been found merely to be aggravating factors, and the real causes have been found by research to include bacterial infection (H pylori) or reaction to various medications, particularly NSAIDs. The identification of H. pylori ulcers has led to a cure for this subtype that was discovered as recently as 1982. Whereas treatment used to involve bedrest and antacids, modern treatment involves killing the H. pylori bacteria or removing the underlying NSAID medication. ...more »

Peptic Ulcer: Symptoms

Symptoms of peptic ulcer can vary depending on the individual. Symptoms can be mild to severe.

Typical symptoms include epigastric pain, and burning in the upper abdomen. Other symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, and pain between the shoulder blades in the back. The pain of a peptic ulcer often begins about two hours after eating and also occurs at night ...more symptoms »

Peptic Ulcer: Treatments

The first step in treating peptic ulcer is prevention. This includes not smoking. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve) should be taken only as directed. Even when taken as directed, some people will develop peptic ulcer with the use of these drugs.

Treatment plans for peptic ulcer are individualized depending on ...more treatments »

Peptic Ulcer: Misdiagnosis

A diagnosis of peptic ulcer and its underlying cause may be delayed or missed because symptoms can be mild or intermittent.

Symptoms of peptic ulcer can also be similar to symptoms of a variety of other diseases and conditions. These include indigestion, GERD, biliary colic, gastroenteritis, and gallstones. Other disease with similar symptoms include esophagitis, ...more misdiagnosis »

Symptoms of Peptic Ulcer

Treatments for Peptic Ulcer

Home Diagnostic Testing

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Wrongly Diagnosed with Peptic Ulcer?

Peptic Ulcer: Related Patient Stories

Peptic Ulcer: Deaths

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Types of Peptic Ulcer

Diagnostic Tests for Peptic Ulcer

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Peptic Ulcer: Complications

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Causes of Peptic Ulcer

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Disease Topics Related To Peptic Ulcer

Research the causes of these diseases that are similar to, or related to, Peptic Ulcer:

Peptic Ulcer: Undiagnosed Conditions

Commonly undiagnosed diseases in related medical categories:

Misdiagnosis and Peptic Ulcer

Chronic digestive conditions often misdiagnosed: When diagnosing chronic symptoms of the digestive tract, there are a variety of conditions that may be misdiagnosed. The best known, irritable bowel syndrome, is more »

Intestinal bacteria disorder may be hidden cause: One of the lesser known causes of diarrhea is an imbalance of bacterial in the gut, sometimes called intestinal more »

Antibiotics often causes diarrhea: The use of antibiotics are very likely to cause some level of diarrhea in patients. The reason is that antibiotics kill off not only "bad" bacteria, but can also more »

Food poisoning may actually be an infectious disease: Many people who come down with "stomach symptoms" like diarrhea assume that it's "something I ate" (i.e. food poisoning). In fact, it's more »

Mesenteric adenitis misdiagnosed as appendicitis in children: Because appendicitis is one of the more feared conditions for a child with abdominal more »

Celiac disease often fails to be diagnosed cause of chronic digestive symptoms: One of the most common chronic digestive conditions is celiac disease, a malabsorption disorder with a variety of symptoms (see symptoms of more »

Chronic digestive diseases hard to diagnose: There is an inherent difficulty in diagnosing the various types of chronic digestive diseases. Some of the better known possibilities are peptic ulcer, more »

Peptic Ulcer: Research Doctors & Specialists

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Hospitals & Clinics: Peptic Ulcer

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Choosing the Best Hospital: More general information, not necessarily in relation to Peptic Ulcer, on hospital performance and surgical care quality:

Peptic Ulcer: Rare Types

Rare types of diseases and disorders in related medical categories:

Latest Treatments for Peptic Ulcer

Evidence Based Medicine Research for Peptic Ulcer

Medical research articles related to Peptic Ulcer include:

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Peptic Ulcer: Animations

Prognosis for Peptic Ulcer

Research about Peptic Ulcer

Visit our research pages for current research about Peptic Ulcer treatments.

Clinical Trials for Peptic Ulcer

The US based website lists information on both federally and privately supported clinical trials using human volunteers.

Some of the clinical trials listed on for Peptic Ulcer include:

Statistics for Peptic Ulcer

Peptic Ulcer: Broader Related Topics

Peptic Ulcer Message Boards

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User Interactive Forums

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Article Excerpts about Peptic Ulcer

A peptic ulcer is a sore on the lining of the stomach or duodenum, which is the beginning of the small intestine. Peptic ulcers are common: One in 10 Americans develops an ulcer at some time in his or her life. (Source: excerpt from H_ pylori and Peptic Ulcer: NIDDK)

Definitions of Peptic Ulcer:

Ulceration of the GASTRIC MUCOSA due to contact with GASTRIC JUICE. It is often associated with HELICOBACTER PYLORI infection or consumption of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS). - (Source - Diseases Database)

An ulcer of the mucous membrane lining of the alimentary tract - (Source - WordNet 2.1)


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