Peptic ulcer known as gastric ulcer is an open sore or raw area that tends to develop in the inner lining (mucus membrane) that encapsulates the stomach or duodenum. Duodenal ulcer is more common than peptic ulcer that often occurs with aging due to the use of medications. Gastric ulcer is mainly related to the corrosive action of pepsin and hydrochloric acid on the mucosa of the upper gastrointestinal tract. Pepsin and hydrochloric acid are both are secreted from different cells in the stomach lining.
Ulcers occur when the mucosa protecting the stomach or duodenum is damaged or weakened, or due to excessive secretion of gastric acid and the inability of mucus membrane to protect. Peptic ulcer may occur as an acute or a chronic disease and it is known to be non-infectious and non- cancerous.
Causes for Stomach Ulcer
- Bacterial infection (Helicobacter pylori) that causes irritation of the lining of the stomach and the upper part of the intestine.
- A damage of mucous membrane of the stomach due to excess hydrochloric acid secretion in the gastric juice.
- Long-term use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs- NSAID such as Ibuprofen, aspirin, cortisone, and rheumatism drugs.
- Extreme stress and nervousness.
- Spicy and hot foods because they affect the stomach wall and may penetrate it.
- Unorganized diet.
- Anxiety, insomnia, over thinking and also stress.
- Genes. The person may be born with weak stomach lining.
- Excessive alcohol consumption.
- Coffee, tea, soft drinks, and also energy drinks.
- Some diseases and disorders such as chronic renal failure, kidney transplant, hyperthyroidism, alcoholic liver diseases, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), in addition to esophagus dysfunction.
- Upper abdominal pain (below the chest bone).
- A feeling of severe heat in the abdomen.
- Appetite loss.
- Increase in stomach acidity and heartburn.
- Weakness of the stomach membrane resistant to hydrochloric acid, this causing high acidity and causing reflux of food towards the esophagus thus causing a non-tolerated pain.
- Severe bleeding of the digestive system, the bleeding comes out through vomiting or with feces.
- Non-treatment of peptic ulcer may cause complications such as the spread of ulcers, bleeding, and even penetrate the stomach wall or the intestines, which requires immediate treatment to prevent the spread of pollution in the abdominal cavity. Another complication is intestinal blockage due to the cessation of food movement within the gastrointestinal tract because of the ulcers.