Gastric Ulcer Symptoms in Women, Men and Children
Peptic ulcer is a painful erosion that occurs in various parts of the digestive tract, inside the lining of tissues. Its most often caused either by medications or an infection with the common H. Pylori bacterium. There are 4 different types of peptic ulcer as defined by area in which they occur. Those in the esophagus are referred to as esophageal ulcers. And, those in the duodenum (the upper part of the small intestine) are called duodenal ulcers. A very small amount of peptic ulcers occur in Meckel’s diverticulum, a small intestinal bulge that not everyone has. And, the stomach can also be home to ulcers, and those found here are referred to as gastric.
Gastric ulcer symptoms are the same as other types of peptic ulcers. The symptoms do not generally change much regardless of the location of the sore. A sensation of fullness in the abdomen and stomach bloating are very common symptoms. And, weight loss or a loss of appetite is also common in the case of a gastric ulcer. Vomiting and nausea are gastric ulcer symptoms that can occur with other types of peptic ulcers as well, and waterbrash has also been reported. Specifically for gastric ulcers, hematemesis can occur. Hematesmesis means vomiting blood, and it occurs when gastric ulcers bleed.
Stomach pain is the most common complaint amongst sufferers of peptic ulcers. According to Wikipedia, this pain can be worse at meal times. The stomach pain associated with gastric ulcer symptoms may be more closely tied to a meal, often occurring during one, than duodenal ulcers (the discomfort from which may not occur until a couple of hours after eating). This can create some confusion as to the causes of stomach pain as they can be easily dismissed as indigestion because of their occurrence during meal time.
While most illnesses can cause a worsening of symptoms in children, with ulcers it is actually often just the opposite. It is not uncommon for an absence of gastric ulcer symptoms to exist in children, and for no symptoms to present unless complications appear. This can also be true in elderly people as well. But, when symptoms do appear in kids, there are some that are less commonly seen in adults than in little ones. For instance, an increase in hiccupping can occur when a gastric ulcer is present. And, difficulties during feeding time can also occur. These can easily be mistaken for other types of digestive disorders commonly seen in children however, so it is important to be on the lookout for other gastric ulcer symptoms and signs.
Adults can encounter worsened symptoms than children in some cases, and much of it has to do with lifestyle decisions that can adversely affect both the healing time and discomfort level of gastric ulcers. Activities like cigarette smoking and drinking alcohol can exacerbate gastric ulcer symptoms in many cases. And, stress, which has been closely attributed to digestive woes for quite some time, can also play a role in symptom development and management as well.
It is important that when signs and symptoms that appear ulcer related present, that they be evaluated by a health care provider promptly. Gastric ulcers are significant amongst other types of peptic ulcers for one main reason, and that is due to their association with cancer. Wikipedia points out that a malignant tumor may be the source of a gastric ulcer in as many as 4% of cases, so determining the cause is very important. Complications can arise as well as a result of leaving gastric ulcers untreated. A perforated gastric ulcer for instance, is considered a serious medical condition and is characterized by a peptic ulcer which has created a hole in the wall of the tissue it has affected. This can lead to infection of the abdominal cavity, as explained by Mayo Clinic. Untreated peptic ulcer disease can also lead to passage blocking scar tissue and internal bleeding. Thus, medical treatment including antibiotics, acid reducing medication and even a special gastric ulcer diet in some cases is essential to the management of the condition.