Peptic Ulcer Symptoms and Signs

Occasionally, a patient of peptic ulcer may not present any peptic ulcer symptoms in the initial stages or even in the later stages. These silent ulcers are detected ultimately when some ulcer complication develops such as perforation or bleeding. The ulcer may come and go without you not knowing that you were having an ulcer.

These symptoms and signs of stomach ulcer, when present are classic and invariable. They are being explained below:

Symptoms of Peptic Ulcer – Stomach and Duodenal

1. Abdominal Pain: This is a one of the classic peptic ulcer symptoms. Ulcer patients feel pain in the abdominal area between the umbilicus and the breastbone. It is a burning or gnawing type of pain and the timing of the pain varies in a gastric and a duodenal ulcer. This is the most common peptic ulcer symptom

As far as the gastric ulcer symptoms are concerned, the pain is felt immediately after meals because of the secretion of the gastric acid to aid digestion. In case of duodenal ulcer symptoms, the pain is felt 2 to 4 hours after the meals.

In a gastric ulcer, the pain is aggravated by food, while, in a duodenal ulcer,  the pain is relieved by food.

In both the cases, the pain may last for a few minutes to a few hours. It may disappear and reappear after a few days or weeks.

2. Regurgitation: In GERD, (gastroesophageal reflux disease) there is regurgitation of pungent tasting gastric contents into the mouth. The body mechanism reacts by the secretion of saliva to dilute these regurgitated contents.

3. Loss of appetite resulting in weight loss

4. Nausea and vomiting

5. Abdominal fullness and distension

6. Haematemesis: (blood in vomitus) Blood vomits, which may look like coffee grounds occur due to a bleeding gastric ulcer

7. Melena: (blood in stools). Black tarry stools are due to a bleeding ulcer. The black color is due to the oxidation of the iron  (haemoglobin) in the blood

You may not experience all these peptic ulcer symptoms, but presence of even one or two of these should be investigated.

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