Peptic Ulcers can be painful and annoying for people suffering this disease. This can affect the quality of life of a person and treating or managing ulcer is essential. Management of ulcer is simple and straightforward. Peptic ulcers when detected early can easily be treated at home with little or no medical supervision.
People who suspect they might be suffering from peptic ulcers are advised to visit their physicians for confirmation and treatment. Self-medication is strongly discouraged and consultation with a doctor is the best way of determining proper disease management and treatment.
The main goal for peptic ulcer treatment is the immediate relief of pain in the patient. Treatment includes targeting and identifying the main cause of the disease. Introducing lifestyle changes which aim to halt the progression of the illness is essential for preventing dangerous complications brought about by the disease. Educating patients regarding the signs and symptoms of the disease and proper management and treatment is also given. While preventing the disease is the most important goal in any health disease program, managing and treating the disease takes equal importance.
There are 3 stages in medical treatment. These are the preventive, curative and rehabilitation phases of treatment. Preventing the occurrence of ulcer is done by providing information and educating the population on how to identify symptoms and avoiding the causes of the disease. The main stage of management is the curative stage where patients suffering the disease undergo treatment. The last phase or rehabilitation stage deals with patient recovery and prevention of disease recurrence.
Treating or managing peptic ulcer diseases is done through two processes; medical and non-medical treatment.
There are two main causative factors for Peptic Ulcer Disease, bacterial infection by Helicobacter pylori or NSAID medications. H. pylori infections account for most of cases and NSAID (Non Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs) side effects is the other major cause.
Self-medication is strongly discouraged and it is always important to consult drug treatment with a doctor. Treating patients with H. pylori infection is done through drug medications. When a patient suffering from Peptic Ulcer Disease is diagnosed with H. pylori infection doctors prescribe antibiotic and acid suppressing drugs. Antibiotics are given to kill and suppress the proliferation of H. pylori bacteria in infected areas. Acid suppressing drugs are given to inhibit further acid production and reduce signs and symptoms of the disease.
Pain Relief through Medications
NSAID drugs used for pain are also one of the major causes of Peptic Ulcer Disease. Some drugs which may have a harmful side effect are ibuprofen (Advil), Feldene, Naprosyn, Voltaren, Indocin, Lodine, and many others. As with aspirin, they can damage the mucous layer of the stomach, after which the stomach acid causes the final injury. Pain relief drugs are usually prescribed by doctors and are the only medications allowed.
Non-medical treatment and Management
Patients suffering from peptic ulcers can undergo treatment outside a clinic after consulting with their doctors. Lifestyle changes such as proper diet, relaxation and regular intake of medications are the usual mode of treatment and management.
- Eating meals at regular intervals help reduce acid concentrations in the stomach. A small snack before bedtime can relieve pain experienced by peptic ulcer patients. Patients are also advised from over eating because high stomach content triggers acid secretion.
- Try to avoid or manage stressful conditions this is because stress induces acid secretions.
- Avoid smoking as this interferes with wound or ulcer healing.
- Maintain proper diet and avoid food or beverages which upset the gastric mucosa like coffee, tea, colas and alcohol.
Peptic Ulcer Disease can easily be prevented and managed. People who show early signs or symptoms should visit their physicians as soon as possible. Any illness should never be taken lightly as this could progress to severe complications and life threatening emergencies. Getting an annual medical checkup remains the best way of detecting diseases and gives the best chance of treatment. Any illness such as Peptic Ulcers can be managed and treated if detected early.
©2009 Hemorrhoid Information Center
H. pylori and Peptic Ulcer. Retrieved Aug 23, 2009 from National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC):
Peptic Ulcer. Retrieved Aug 23, 2009 from NHS Choices: http://www.nhs.uk
Peptic Ulcer Disease Information. Retrieved Aug 23, 2009