- gastric inflammation
What is going on in the body?
What are the causes and risks of the disease?
- infection with a bacteria called H. pylori (chronic)
- irritation caused by medicines, such as antibiotics, aspirin or nonsteroidal inflammatory drugs called NSAIDs (usually acute and may be complicated by ulcers and/or bleeding especially in the elderly).
- ingestion of caustic or corrosive materials (acute)
- severe trauma or illness during intensive care (acute)
- autoimmune disorders, which are conditions in which the immune system may attack the stomach in certain individuals with a predisposition (genetic). These individuals may also have diabetes, adrenal gland disease, and vitamin B12 deficiency. (chronic)
- alcohol (acute and chronic)
What can be done to prevent the disease?
- limiting or avoiding alcohol and caffeine
- limiting or avoiding aspirin or non steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines, such as ibuprofen (i.e., Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (i.e., Anaprox, Aleve, Naprosyn) which are called COX-1 inhibitors.
- taking medications such as a histamine type 2-receptor blocker (such as ranitidine <i.e., Zantac> or cimetidine <i.e., Tagamet>) or a proton pump inhibitor (like omeprazole <i.e., Prilosec>) to reduce acid secretion
- quit smoking
- eradicate H. pylori infection with antibiotics if it is diagnosed.
How is the disease diagnosed?
- doing a physical exam and asking about symptoms of gastritis
- checking a stool sample for blood
- checking the appearance of the stomach lining with an endoscope, a camera on a long, thin tube that goes down through the mouth and into the stomach
- doing a biopsy, which means taking a sample of tissue from the stomach lining for examination under a microscope
- If the bacteria H. pylori is suspected, a blood test, a breath test, or biopsy may be done to see if it is has infected the stomach and caused the gastritis.
Long Term Effects
What are the long-term effects of the disease?
What are the risks to others?
What are the treatments for the disease?
- antibiotics if H. pylori is thought to be the cause (treatment is usually 3 antibiotics and a proton pump inhibitor for 7-14 days)
- medications such as cimetidine (i.e., Tagamet) or omeprazole (i.e., Prilosec)
- changes in lifestyle, such as not smoking and limiting or avoiding alcohol
- surgery, if bleeding occurs
- avoidance of aspirin or NSAIDs if possible, but if NSAIDs are necessary, the considering the use of a COX-2 inhibitors rather than a COX-1 NSAIDs
What are the side effects of the treatments?
What happens after treatment for the disease?
How is the disease monitored?