Ulcers are Caused by H Pylori Bacteria

Ulcer is a ‘Slowly Healing Wound’ in human skin,especially inside Stomach and also on various other organs such as:-,

  • Mouth
  • Small Intestine
  • Genitalia
  • Eyes

Ulcer in the Stomach, is called “Peptic Ulcer”. Ulcer will affect both men and women of all ages.

It was believed by people and doctors that diet habits and stress were the causes of ulcer.In 1982, two doctors, Barry Marshall and Robin Warren discovered a certain kind of bacteria that can live and grow in the stomach. Both of them won the Nobel Prize for their discovery. The medical name for these bacteria is “Helicobacter pylori”/ “H. pylori”.

Today it is well known that most ulcers are caused by an infection from H. pylori. Some other factors shown below are also responsible for ulcers apart form H pylori bacteria:-

  • Frequent and prolonged taking in of Pain relievers(Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs/NSAIDS), such as Aspirin and Ibuprfen
  • Smoking
  • Excess Cosumption of Alcohol
  • Stress Emotional or Physical

Signs and Symptoms of Peptic Ulcer:-

  • Stomach Pain few hours after eating: and/ or in the early morning when the stomach is empty. Eating something or taking some antacid will take away the pain in some cases.
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sudden/ sharp stomach pain
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Undue and Unintentional Weight Loss
  • If trace of blood appears in the vomiting the colour will be light brown
  • Trace of Blood/Blackish Bowel Movements

If the above symptoms are found, you must start treatment, on consultation with the doctor. If you ignore these symptoms and leave them unattended, the ulcer will become worse and there will be bleeding inside the stomach and even a hole will be formed, leading to complications.

The doctor will perform a physical examination and will take a medical history of the patient,by asking about :-

  • Symptoms
  • Past Health history of the Patient
  • Past/Present Health history of the Family memers
  • Any medications taken by the Patient for other diseases or conditions
  • Any allergies of the Patient

If you have Stomach pain or other symptoms of an ulcer, the doctor will take some more of the following tests.

Diagnosis of Peptic Ulcer:-

  • Gastrointestinal (GI) X ray/Barium Xray:Barium, a white liquid must be taken in by the patient and X-ray will be taken to find if there is any wound in the food pipe or stomach.
  • Endoscopy:- Another common procedure for diagnosing an ulcer is called an endoscopy During this test, the doctor uses an endoscope, a skinny, lighted tube with a special camera on the end.The doctor will gently guide the endoscope into the throat and down into the esophagus, and finally into the stomach and upper intestines. The doctor will be able to look at the inner lining of these organs from the camera on a television monitor and will take pictures.

The doctor will ask the patient to take a blood test for “H. pylori bacteria”. This will be important if an ulcer suspected or is found in the upper GI series. Also the bowel movement and breath of the patient will be tested to check for the
“H. pylori bacteria”.

Treatment for Peptic Ulcer:-

The first step in the treatment for Peptic Ulcer is to reduce the risk factors such as:-

  • Consumption of NSAID’s
  • Smoking

The next step will be medications. The following are used in treatment of Peptic Ulcer:-

  • Antacids
  • Histamine antagonists/ H2 blockers
  • Proton-pump inhibitors
  • Sucralfate/Carafate and Misoprostol/ Cytotec

Prevention of Ulcers:-
It is not certain how “H. pylori bacteria” are transmitted from one person to another. They may spread through:-

  • Food
  • Water
  • The Patient’s Saliva

For the Prevention of Ulcer :-

  • Always wash your hands with soap after using toilet
  • Wash your hands with soap before and after eating
  • Do moderate exercises regularly
  • Do Walking Exercise
  • Avoid Smoking
  • Avoid Alcohol drinking.

There is no concrete evidence that:-

  • Dietary restrictions play a role in ulcer healing.
  • Any relationship exists between peptic ulcer and the intake of coffee and alcohol: However, as coffee will stimulate gastric acid secretion, and alcohol will cause gastritis patients are advised to avoid both coffee and alcohol.

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