Peptic Ulcer Disease in Denver, CO
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What is peptic ulcer disease?
A common gastric concern, peptic ulcers are open sores that develop in the stomach (known as a gastric ulcer) or upper small intestine (duodenal ulcer) that often lead to discomfort, bleeding, and pain. The type of cells that line the stomach are encased in a layer of mucus that helps minimize the risk of stomach damage. When the protective structure within the small bowel or stomach becomes compromised, then the stomach acid erodes and damages the tissue that sits behind the protective wall.
Though any individual can experience peptic ulcer disease, some people may have an increased risk for this condition if peptic ulcers run in their family or they are age 50 or older. The GI specialists at Colorado Gastroenterology offer skilled care for this type of medical condition. If you are seeking treatment for peptic ulcers in Denver, CO, please get in touch with our practice today to set up an appointment.
What causes peptic ulcers?
As mentioned above, a peptic ulcer occurs when the tissue in the stomach or small bowel comes into contact with pepsin, which is stomach acid. Pepsin then erodes the tissue within the organ. There are two primary reasons, however, behind why the protective lining in the stomach becomes eroded.
Helicobacter pylori, frequently referred to as H. pylori, is a bacteria that might enter your system in a number of ways. But when it enters the body, it can damage the protective mucus layer in the stomach. This produces openings in the protective lining that can lead to ulcerations. When helicobacter pylori is detected, your doctor can prescribe antibiotics to help destroy the destructive bacteria.
There are specific pain relievers, for example, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) and aspirin, that can hinder your body from producing a chemical substance that helps protect the inner walls of your stomach and small bowel.
Other forms of pain medications, such as Tylenol (acetaminophen), do not lead to the formation of stomach and small intestine ulcers. As such, healthcare practitioners recommend taking pain relievers in small and controlled dosages.
Risk factors for peptic ulcers
Other factors that elevate the risk of developing duodenal or gastric ulcers involve:
- Alcohol use
- Tobacco use
- Consuming foods that are spicy or acidic
- Regular use of NSAID pain relievers
Our Denver, CO gastroenterologists can recognize the symptoms of peptic ulcers and help determine what might be creating this gastrointestinal condition.
What are the symptoms of peptic ulcers?
Since peptic ulcers are largely open sores in the stomach or small bowel, people generally feel a burning pain and discomfort in the abdominal region when they occur.
Further signs and symptoms of peptic ulcers are:
- Unwanted weight loss
- Presence of blood in the stool
- Acid reflux and heartburn
- Intolerance to fatty food
- Loss of appetite
Should you have blood in your stool or if you vomit, it is important to call your doctor as soon as possible. If you are affected by any combination of the symptoms listed above or take over-the-counter antacids that reduce your discomfort, but the pain returns, schedule a visit with a GI physician at Colorado Gastroenterology as soon as you can.
How is peptic ulcer disease treated?
Peptic ulcer disease can be addressed and its symptoms can subside after some time. Treatment options for peptic ulcers include the following:
- Endoscopic procedures to cauterize bleeding arteries
- Antacids to neutralize stomach acid
- Reduce the use of specific types of pain relievers
- Cytoprotective agents (medication to protect the lining of the small intestine and stomach)
- Acid-reducing medication (H-2 blockers)
- Antibiotics to kill H. pylori
To learn more about how the treatment options work, contact the GI specialists at Colorado Gastroenterology.
Get treatment for peptic ulcer disease
Get in touch with Colorado Gastroenterology to learn more about your options for care and how we go above and beyond to assist our patients. Our GI physicians provide peptic ulcer treatment in Denver, CO and aim to help you enjoy your life without discomfort or pain. Schedule your consultation today.
The nurse was SO funny and friendly, all of the people working in the office were sweet and helpful, and the doctor was so informative. I felt listened to and felt like I really understood the full extent of the processes I was going to go through.
Amazing Group and Dr. Brenner!
Very knowledgeable doctor. He also took his time listening to my concerns and was patience. I'm very satisfied with my visit. Thank you
Very thorough and informative. Helps me understand and teaches me why something is happening in my body.
Very pleasant visit. The steps to diagnose my condition were explained to me and I felt quite comfortable with this doctor.