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    Peptic ulcer: why it occurs and how to avoid

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    Stomach or duodenal ulcer can be earned not by stress or unhealthy diet. What is the danger of peptic ulcer disease – in the material

    Most stomach ulcers are due to bacteria, not food. / Photo: Collage: Today

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    Cause of peptic ulcer in most cases, anti-inflammatory drugs and bacteria become, not food. Why a strict diet is not needed in case of an ulcer and how to avoid a peptic ulcer – gastroenterologist MS “Dobrobut” helped to figure it out Artem Neverovsky.

    Artem Neverovsky
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    Artem Neverovsky / Photo: press service

    Why does a stomach ulcer occur?

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    Ulcer or, as doctors call this disease, peptic ulcer is one of the most common diseases. In general, diseases of the digestive system are the third most common causes of death in Ukraine.

    A peptic ulcer is a kind of wound on the mucous membrane of the stomach or duodenum, which is prone to recurrence. That is, some time after healing, if the cause of its occurrence has not been eliminated, the wound reappears.

    The main causes of ulcers are the bacteria Helicobacter pylori and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

    The main causes of ulcers are the bacteria Helicobacter pylori and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. / Photo: Collage: Today

    Previously it was believed that the causes of peptic ulcers, or simply stomach ulcers, are stress and unhealthy diet, but neither emotional experience nor food has anything to do with it. It has now been proven that the two main causes of stomach ulcers are: Helicobacter pylori bacteria and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as paracetamol, aspirin, etc.

    About 90% of duodenal ulcers and 70% of stomach ulcers are caused by H. pylori infection. Peptic ulcer is quite successfully subject to treatment, and recently there has been a tendency to decrease the incidence all over the world, – notes Artem Neverovsky, – Of course, some products can “irritate” and aggravate the symptoms of an existing ulcer, but not lead to its appearance.

    Accordingly, even highly restrictive diets have no proven effect in treating disease. The times when patients with this disease “lived on a diet” remain long past.

    How to recognize a stomach ulcer: symptoms

    In everyday life, we do not always give credit to attention to symptomsthat can talk about the onset of the disease:

    • episodic (lasting several hours) pain in the upper abdomen (epigastric region), which can both increase and decrease after eating;
    • heartburn, heaviness in the stomach,
    • feeling of fullness, early satiety,
    • nausea, vomiting.

    But these symptoms are not exclusively characteristic of peptic ulcers and can be observed and with other diseases digestive system. If they appear, you must consult a gastroenterologist who can establish the cause of the symptoms.

    Abdominal pain, nausea, can be not only with a peptic ulcer

    Abdominal pain, nausea, can be not only with a peptic ulcer / Photo: freepik.com

    Try to listen to yourself and pay attention to your sensations after eating… Even such seemingly minor symptoms as abdominal discomfort and heartburn can be manifestations of a dangerous disease.

    Is a peptic ulcer dangerous for life?

    Discomfort is not as bad as possible complications of stomach ulcersif it is not treated: bleeding, perforation is a process in which a rupture of the stomach wall occurs with the ingress of its contents into the abdominal cavity and, as a result, the formation of inflammation in the abdominal cavity – peritonitis.

    There is a risk of progression stomach ulcers into cancer. If symptoms such as repeated vomiting, especially dark brown masses, a change in the color of stool to black, severe weakness, weight loss, aversion to food, unexpected “dagger” pain in the abdomen, you should immediately consult a doctor, as this can be life threatening and require surgical intervention.

    How can an ulcer be diagnosed with certainty?

    The gastroenterologist will help with this: after a detailed interview, collecting a history of the disease and a thorough assessment of symptoms, the doctor usually refers the patient to endoscopic examination – fibrogastroduodenoscopy (FGDS).

    This allows not only see the state of the mucous membrane the lining of the digestive tract, but also conduct a biopsy – taking a tissue sample for examination under a microscope. Thus, it is possible to detect the presence of Helicobacter pylori bacteria and determine whether a stomach ulcer is malignant.

    And if I am afraid of FGDS, what should I do?

    You should not be afraid of this procedure. At first, modern endoscopes – these are tubes with a diameter of 8-11 mm, which reduces discomfort during the examination. Secondly, the patient can always make an examination in a state of medication sleep (a light version of general anesthesia).

    You need to be afraid not of the EGD procedure, but of the complications that are caused by an undiagnosed ulcer

    You need to be afraid not of the EGD procedure, but of the complications that are caused by an undiagnosed ulcer / Photo: Collage: Today

    And thirdly, you need to be afraid not of examinations, but of those diseases and complications that can not be diagnosed in time by abandoning the procedure. In addition to endoscopy, to confirm the diagnosis, they also use laboratory tests, aimed at detecting Helicobacter pylori infection and assessing the state of the body as a whole.

    Why can’t you treat the ulcer yourself?

    Therapeutic tactics depend on the reasonthat caused the disease. If the cause is H. pylori infection, then the treatment will be to combat its pathogen. Such therapy involves several drugs to reduce acidity and restore the mucous membrane, as well as antibiotics.

    Self-healing of the ulcer will not have an effect and, over time, will increase the risk of recurrence, as well as possible complications.

    Self-healing of the ulcer will not have an effect and, over time, will increase the risk of recurrence, as well as possible complications. / Photo: Depositphotos

    The effectiveness of this treatment tactics has been tested over the years, and the drugs that are included in the scheme are constantly being improved by pharmaceutical manufacturers. It should be noted that only a doctor can correctly prescribe treatment, since there are many nuances, ranging from specific drugs and ending with the frequency and duration of the course of treatment.

    That’s why no need to self-medicate, this in most cases will be ineffective and can lead to incomplete cure, which over time will increase the risk of recurrence of peptic ulcer and its possible complications.

    Ok, but maybe a special diet will help then?

    As we have already found out, food does not cause stomach ulcers or the duodenum. Most scientists and international gastroenterological associations do not recommend any specific diet for this disease. On the contrary, strict restrictive diets should be avoided.

    With an ulcer, a strict diet is not needed, and the doctor will tell you which foods to limit.

    With an ulcer, a strict diet is not needed, and the doctor will tell you which foods to limit. / Photo: unsplash.com

    The diet should be balanced and take into account the individual characteristics of the person who may be advised to give up black coffee or, for example, spicy food, as it can aggravate the symptoms. Alcohol consumption it is better to restrict completely.

    Is always listen to your health and trust the professionals. The possibilities of modern medicine make it possible to minimize discomfort and make the treatment process fast and effective.

    We also wrote earlier how to understand that you have gastritis.

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