What Triggers a Peptic Ulcer?

Drs. Rodgers and James explain the causes of peptic ulcers and symptoms to look out for.

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DR. RODGERS: Can anxiety or spicy foods cause peptic ulcers?

Hi, I’m Dr. Griffin Rodgers with the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at NIH.

The answer is no. A peptic ulcer is a sore in the lining of your stomach or the first part of your small intestine. My colleague, Dr. Stephen James, points out...

DR. JAMES: You may be surprised to hear that often-used medications, such as aspirin or ibuprofen, called NSAIDS, are a common cause of peptic ulcers. Ulcers are also caused by bacteria, called H. pylori. The most common symptom of a peptic ulcer is a dull or burning pain in the stomach that comes and goes between meals.

DR. RODGERS: Other symptoms of a peptic ulcer may include weight loss or feeling sick to your stomach. Even if you have mild symptoms that are persistent, see a doctor. Untreated, ulcers can get worse.

For more about peptic ulcers, follow us on Twitter @NIDDKgov. This is Dr. Griffin Rodgers with the NIH.

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