Peptic Ulcers in Kansas City, MO
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What are peptic ulcers?
A common gastric concern, peptic ulcers are open sores that develop in the stomach (gastric ulcer) or upper small intestine (referred to as a duodenal ulcer) that often result in discomfort, bleeding, and pain. The variation of cells that line the stomach are encased in a mucus layer that helps reduce the risk of stomach damage. If the protective structure within the small intestine or stomach is compromised, then the stomach acid causes erosion of the tissue that sits behind the protective wall.
Even though anybody can experience peptic ulcers, some patients may have a greater risk if they have a family history of peptic ulcers or are 50 years or older. The GI physicians at Digestive Health Specialists offer specialized care for this type of medical issue. If you are seeking treatment for peptic ulcers in Kansas City, MO, please contact our facility right away to arrange an appointment.
What causes peptic ulcers?
As discussed above, a peptic ulcer happens when the small intestine or stomach's organ tissue comes into contact with pepsin, or the substance commonly referred to as stomach acid. The stomach acid then erodes the organ’s tissue. There are two main reasons, however, for why the protective lining in the stomach becomes eroded.
Helicobacter pylori, frequently called H. pylori, is a type of bacteria that can enter your body in a number of routes. But when it enters, it can attack the layer of mucus lining the stomach. This produces holes in that protective layer which can lead to ulcers. If helicobacter pylori is detected, a doctor may prescribe antibiotics to help get rid of the harmful bacteria.
Certain pain relievers, like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs medications and aspirin, can prevent your body from making a chemical substance that helps protect the inner linings of your small intestine and stomach.
Other types of pain relievers, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), do not contribute to the rise of small intestine and stomach ulcers. That is why medical providers advise using pain medication in controlled and small amounts.
Risk factors for peptic ulcers
Other risk factors for peptic ulcers are:
- Regular use of NSAIDs
- Eating foods that are spicy or acidic
- Tobacco use
- Drinking alcohol
Our Kansas City, MO gastroenterologists can recognize the indications of peptic ulcers and help ascertain what might be causing the GI condition.
What are common symptoms of peptic ulcers?
Given that peptic ulcers are really open sores in the stomach or small bowel, people frequently experience discomfort and a burning sensation in the abdomen when this condition has developed. Additional signs of peptic ulcers involve:
- Unwanted weight loss
- Fatty food intolerance
- Presence of blood in the stool
- Acid reflux and heartburn
- Appetite loss
If you notice a bloody stool or if you vomit, it is important to get in touch with your provider right away. If you notice any combination of the symptoms mentioned above or take over-the-counter antacids that reduce your pain, but the pain comes back, arrange for an appointment with a gastroenterology specialist at Digestive Health Specialists at your earliest convenience.
What are the treatment options for peptic ulcers?
With the proper medical care, peptic ulcers can be treated and can improve after some time. Common treatments for peptic ulcers may include:
- Cytoprotective agents (medication to protect the lining of the small intestine and stomach)
- Antacids to neutralize stomach acid
- Antibiotics to kill H. pylori
- Medications to reduce acid production (H-2 blockers)
- Endoscopy to cauterize bleeding arteries
- Reduce the use of certain pain medications
Find treatment for peptic ulcers
Our gastroenterologists provide peptic ulcer treatment to Kansas City, MO patients and wish to help you live your life without pain. Contact Digestive Health Specialists to explore your treatment options and hear more about our dedication to patient care. Arrange for a consultation today.
Dr. Ryan Utarnachitt was thorough and his team/staff were wonderful.
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Dr Able is kind, patient and makes you feel comfortable.
Dr Able and all of the staff were excellent
Excellant doctor and staff! Dr. Wade McCullough