Peptic Ulcer (Patient Counselling Guide)
05 Jun 2020
Peptic ulcers are holes or breaks in the lining of the stomach or the duodenum (the upper part of the small intestine), areas that come into contact with stomach acids (hydrochloric acid) and enzymes (pepsin). In order to avoid mucosal damage and digestion of the stomach itself, the normal stomach also secretes a protective alkaline mucus. The balance between potentially damaging and protective factors can be disrupted in various conditions, resulting in inflammation of the stomach or gastritis. More severe mucosal damage can occur, leading to development of an ulcer (complete loss of the mucosa) or erosion (loss of part of the thickness of the mucosa). The underlying causes of peptic ulceration are diverse. Agents such as alcohol and drugs (eg, NSAIDs, steroids, anticoagulants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, alendronate,
risedronate) can lead to mucosal damage. Infection with the bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is another cause. Other risk factors include cigarette smoking, alcohol abuse, psychological stress and genetics. Having a family member with peptic ulcer may make a person more likely to develop peptic ulcer. Some peptic ulcers may heal without treatment. However, the symptoms may recur and worsen if the cause of the ulcer is not eliminated. If not properly treated, ulcers can lead to serious health problems including bleeding, perforation (a hole through the wall of the stomach) or gastric outlet obstruction from swelling or scarring that blocks the passageway leading from the stomach to the small intestine.
* Click below to view the Patient Counselling Guide in Thai