Peptic Ulcers in Denver, CO
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What is a peptic ulcer?
Peptic ulcers are open sores or ulcerations that develop in the stomach (known as a gastric ulcer) or upper small intestine (known as a duodenal ulcer) that may lead to discomfort, pain, and bleeding. The variation of cells that comprise the stomach lining are covered by a mucus layer that helps protect the stomach against damage. If this protective component within the small intestine or stomach is damaged, then the stomach acid erodes and damages the tissue found behind the protective wall.
Even though any individual can develop peptic ulcers, some people may carry an elevated risk if they are 50 or older or if peptic ulcers run in their family. The digestive health specialists at Denver Digestive Health Specialists offer experienced care for this type of health concern. If you need treatment for peptic ulcers in Denver, CO, please call our office right away to reserve a consultation.
What are the causes of peptic ulcers?
As outlined above, a peptic ulcer develops when the tissue in the stomach or small bowel comes into contact with pepsin, which is stomach acid. This acid then starts to erode the organ’s tissue. There are two primary reasons, however, for why the stomach's protective lining becomes eroded.
Helicobacter pylori, often known simply as H. pylori, is a bacteria that can enter a person's system in a variety of routes, but if it finds its way in, it can harm the mucus lining of the stomach. This produces openings in that protective layer which can cause ulcerations. If H. pylori bacteria are detected, your physician can recommend antibiotics to help eliminate the harmful bacteria.
Specific types of pain relievers, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and aspirin, can prohibit your body from generating a chemical substance that works to help protect the internal walls of your stomach and small bowel.
Other types of pain medications, for example Tylenol® (acetaminophen), will not lead to the development of ulcers in the small intestine and stomach. As such, doctors advise taking pain relievers in controlled and small amounts.
Risk factors for peptic ulcers
Further factors that elevate the risk of peptic ulcers are as follows:
- Alcohol consumption
- Tobacco use
- Eating foods that are spicy or acidic
- Regular use of NSAID pain medication
Our Denver, CO gastroenterologists can identify the signs and symptoms of peptic ulcers and help determine what might be the source of the gastrointestinal condition.
What are common symptoms of peptic ulcers?
Since peptic ulcers are open sores in the stomach or small bowel, people frequently feel a burning pain and discomfort in the abdominal area when they have developed. Other signs and symptoms of peptic ulcers involve:
- Decreased appetite
- Heartburn and acid reflux
- Intolerance to fatty foods
- Bloody stool
- Unintentional weight loss
- Feeling bloated
Should you notice blood in your stool or if you vomit, please get in touch with your provider without delay. 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, request an appointment with a GI provider at Denver Digestive Health Specialists at your earliest convenience.
What are the treatments for peptic ulcers?
With the proper medical care, peptic ulcers can be treated and can subside over time. Options commonly used to treat peptic ulcers can include:
- Antibiotics to kill Helicobacter pylori
- Cytoprotective agents (medication to protect the lining of the small intestine and stomach)
- Decrease the use of certain pain medications
- Medications to reduce acid production (H-2 blockers)
- Endoscopy to cauterize bleeding arteries
- Antacids to neutralize stomach acid
Find treatment for peptic ulcers
Our GI physicians provide peptic ulcer treatment to Denver, CO patients and want to help you experience life in the absence of discomfort or pain. Reach out to Denver Digestive Health Specialists so that you can learn more about your options for care and how we go above and beyond to help you. Arrange for your consultation today.
I can honestly say that Dr. Siegel cares about his patients. He has gone above and beyond to get and resolve any GI issues I have encountered. He leaves no stones unturned. He is the best. Thank you Dr. Siegel for caring.
Dr. Siegel is absolutely the best he makes you feel very comfortable in sometimes an uncomfortable situation🙄. He will always be my go to doc!…. Thanks for your compassion Dr Siegel👍🏼
She was great
The snow was deep and the appointment late in the day. However, Dr. Fishman was able to see me immediately, I reviewed my progress since the last visit, he asked questions, gave me an exam and we were finished. Although that may sound a bit hasty, we were able to complete our appointment, he reviewed the medication with me, and I will be able to see him again in four months. I was very satisfied with this appointment.