What is a peptic ulcer?

The peptic ulcer is a lesion of the lining of the stomach or duodenum which is the first part of the small intestine. A peptic ulcer is formed in the wall of the stomach or duodenum. 


How does it work?

Your stomach contains gastric juices, which will help break down the food you have swallowed. To protect themselves from these very powerful juices, the stomach is covered with a protective mucous membrane. But when this mucosa is difficult to regenerate or is degraded, there is a lesion in the stomach: it is a gastric ulcer. If the lesion is present in the first portion of the small intestine, just after the pylorus at the exit of the stomach: it is a duodenal ulcer. Duodenal ulcer is ten times more common than the ulcer of the stomach. The term stomach ulcer (gastric) and duodenum ulcer, which occurs just after the stomach, is often referred to as the first part of the small intestine. It is the peptic ulcer. A peptic ulcer can occur at any age, but its peak frequency is between 55 and 65 years.

Causes of a peptic ulcer

For a long time it was believed that the ulcer was caused by psychosomatic factors. Some even think that stress can cause an ulcer. It’s wrong. Ulcers are caused by an imbalance in acid concentration in the stomach and duodenum. This promotes the proliferation of a bacterium: Helicobacter pylori. To date, it is the only known bacterium capable of developing in an environment as acidic as that which reigns in our stomach. It is estimated that it is the cause of 99% of ulcers. Its presence increases secretions of acids, which prevents the body from repairing the protective lining. Our treatment aims at the total destruction of this bacterium.

However, there are other factors that can increase the risk of having a stomach ulcer. These are not causes of ulcer, but these factors can aggravate an existing ulcer or intensify the manifestations. These include: alcohol, tobacco, coffee, taking certain medications (aspirin, ibuprofen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), psychological stress, being older than 50 years.



Symptoms of a peptic ulcer

It is common for a person with a stomach ulcer to feel no particular symptoms. However, among the most common symptoms, we have:

-Pain or burning sensation in the stomach, especially during meals. The pain can last from a few minutes to several hours, depending on the severity of the ulcer. This is the symptom that best characterizes the pain associated with the ulcer.

– A feeling of being quickly satiated is also typical of stomach ulcer, as well as bloating. In advanced cases, you may notice weight loss and vomiting.

These symptoms usually last for a few days and then return periodically.

Ulcers and sports activities

Contrary to popular belief, playing sports is not a contraindication for ulcers. If you have an ulcer, we recommend avoiding stress, promoting physical relaxation and practicing sports if possible. Playing sports a little bit every day helps to preserve one’s health and limit weight gain, which helps reduce gastro-oesophageal reflux. Apart from the positive effects on your symptoms, a regular sport will permanently protect your health by reducing the risk of the appearance of many diseases (cardiovascular diseases, obesity, diabetes, osteoporosis …). If you practice a sport, we you should avoid stomach upsets such as gymnastics, combat sports or sports that require a lot of abs such as rowing. On the contrary, jogging is particularly beneficial.

Your most frequently asked questions (FAQ):

What is the link between ulcer and stomach cancer?

Some patients with gastric ulcers also develop stomach cancer. The chronic inflammation of the lining of the stomach, caused by Helicobacter pylori, first causes an ulcer, and in the long term it turns the mucosa into cancerous cells. This is often seen in patients with acid hypo-secretion and particularly affects populations over 50 years of age. About 80% of stomach cancers are related to chronic Helicobacter pylori infection. The symptoms of stomach cancer are many and misleading. The pain of the pit of the stomach is frequent and resembles that of the ulcer. One can also find sensations of bloating, burns.

However, rest assured! 

Few patients infected with the bacteria develop gastric cancer. During your diagnosis, your doctor must make several biopsies (samples) to check that the ulcer in question is not cancer. Our natural treatment eradicates the bacteria and limits the risk of developing stomach cancer.

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