Peptic Ulcer : Symptoms

Definition

A peptic ulcer is erosion in the lining of the stomach or the first part of the small intestine, an area called the duodenum. If the peptic ulcer is located in the stomach it is called a gastric ulcer.

It is defined as mucosal erosions equal to or greater than 0.5 cm. As many as 70–90% of such ulcers are associated with Helicobacter pylori, a spiral-shaped bacterium that lives in the acidic environment of the stomach.

Symptoms

Small ulcers may not cause any symptoms. Some ulcers can cause serious bleeding.

Abdominal pain is a common symptom but it doesn’t always occur. The pain can differ a lot from person to person.
1. Feeling of fullness — unable to drink as much fluid
2. Hunger and an empty feeling in the stomach, often 1 – 3 hours after a meal
3. Mild nausea (vomiting may relieve symptom)
4. Pain or discomfort in the upper abdomen
5. Upper abdominal pain that wakes you up at night

Other possible symptoms include:
1. Bloody or dark tarry stools
2. Chest pain
3. Fatigue
4. Vomiting, possibly bloody
5. Weight loss

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