Get all of your questions about ulcers answered by the experts.
Whether you’ve been diagnosed with peptic ulcers or suspect that you might be dealing with one, we know that you want to get answers to this problem, so you’re not left in the dark about what they are and how to treat them. Our New York, NY, gastroenterologist Dr. Daniel Alpert can quickly diagnose and treat your peptic ulcers.
What is a peptic ulcer?
An ulcer is a sore that develops in the digestive tract lining, often the stomach or small intestines. Ulcers can range in size and depth.
What causes an ulcer?
Sometimes, when there is an increase in acid within the stomach, ulcers are more likely to form due to the breakdown of the lining within the digestive tract. Certain medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (e.g., aspirin or ibuprofen) can also lead to peptic ulcers. An H. pylori bacterial infection of the stomach can also cause peptic ulcers to form.
What are the signs and symptoms?
Abdominal pain is a classic sign of a peptic ulcer. It may feel like churning or burning pain in the upper-middle part of the abdomen. You may also experience heartburn. It’s common for the pain to worsen after eating, especially with fried or spicy foods. On the other hand, those with peptic ulcers in the intestines rather than the stomach may experience relief after eating. It’s also common for individuals with peptic ulcers in the stomach to lose weight. Other symptoms may include,
- Easily bloated
How is a peptic ulcer diagnosed?
There are several ways to diagnose a peptic ulcer. A barium X-ray may detect a peptic ulcer; however, the most reliable tool is an endoscopy, which allows our New York, NY, gastroenterologist to look inside the stomach or small intestines to detect ulcers, as well as the location, depth and severity. Lastly, blood tests may also be used to detect the presence of H. pylori.
Will an ulcer go away on its own?
While some peptic ulcers heal on their own, the problem is that they are often likely to come back, especially if you don’t kill the bacteria responsible. That’s why it’s important to turn to our gastroenterologist here in New York if you suspect that you might have an ulcer.
How is an ulcer treated?
Once we know what is causing your ulcer, we can map out a treatment plan, especially for you. For example, antibiotics are prescribed to kill the H. pylori bacteria, while there are lifestyle changes that you’ll also need to follow to allow the ulcer to heal properly. If NSAIDs are causing your ulcers, you’ll need to avoid them entirely to give your gut time to heal. Our team may also prescribe antacids to reduce stomach acid to protect the lining of the stomach or intestines so they can heal.
If you are concerned about peptic ulcers, our New York, NY, team can provide you with the treatment you need. Call (212) 599-7910 today to schedule an evaluation with Dr. Alpert.