Most people can get bacterial stomach infections caused by the H. pylori bacteria.
But not everyone who is exposed to H. pylori gets stomach ulcers.
Radiation exposure can cause complications with the stomach lining and lead to ulcers.
Certain behaviors can increase the risk of developing stomach ulcers:
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Regular use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen
- Using tobacco products
Stomach ulcer symptoms
People with stomach ulcers can experience a dull or burning pain in the upper abdomen. This pain can come and go for days or months.
Other stomach ulcer symptoms include:
- Appetite changes
- Overall ill feeling
- Unexplained weight loss
Be sure to contact your primary care provider if you are experiencing stomach ulcer symptoms.
Screening and diagnosing stomach ulcers
Patients will undergo a physical exam and should tell their doctor if they regularly take NSAIDs, drink, or smoke. Blood, stool or breath tests may be done to rule out certain infections. Other tests can include:
- Barium swallow
- Endoscopic Biopsy