Peptic ulcer disease (PUD) is an ulcerative condition of the stomach or duodenum (the first part of the small intestine). The characteristic manifestations are burning sensation at the top of the stomach (epigastric area) that can travel up to the chest, causing heartburn, nausea, vomiting, and flatulence.
At times, despite the lifestyle changes and dietary modifications, symptoms may still be disturbing which entails medical management. The aim of medical treatment in peptic ulcers is to promote healing, alleviate pain, and prevent the deleterious complications (like intractable pain, intestinal obstruction, active bleeding, or perforation).
The mainstay of medical management for peptic ulcers includes antacids (magnesium hydroxide + aluminum hydroxide), histamine 2 (H2) receptor antagonists (like ranitidine, cimetidine, famotidine), and proton pump inhibitors or PPIs (like omeprazole and pantoprazole). Antacids promote the healing of ulcers and provide relief of symptoms by neutralizing gastric acid while H2 receptor antagonists and PPI’s are potent inhibitors of stomach acid production. Nevertheless, a consultation with a medical specialist is required for possible further workup and treatment regimen with an optimal result.
As a fact, everyone is susceptible to peptic ulcer. Prevention is always better than cure. So avoid vices and eat healthy, balanced meals. Do not overeat! Echoing Marcus Valerius Martialis, “life is not merely being alive, but being well.” It is indeed right and proper to take care of your body as this is the only place we have to live.