Peptic Ulcer Disease

Peptic Ulcer Disease (PUD)

Peptic ulcer disease (PUD) is a condition that is caused by the erosion of the lining of the stomach, small intestines, and/or esophagus. It is a common condition, affecting approximately 4 million Americans each year. There can be a number of symptoms associated with PUD, such as abdominal pain, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, and bloating. It’s often treated with antibiotics, but some medications and lifestyle changes can also help.

Causes of Peptic Ulcers

The cause of peptic ulcer disease is not fully understood, but certain factors may contribute, including:

  • Bacterial infection - A certain bacterium, known as Helicobacter pylori, has been linked to PUD.
  • Medications - Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin and ibuprofen, can lead to PUD.
  • Stress - Stress has been linked to an increased risk of PUD.
  • Genetics - Genetics can also play a role in the development of PUD.


The diagnosis of PUD can be made with a combination of medical history, physical examination, and diagnostic tests. These tests may include X-rays, endoscopy, breath or stool tests, and blood tests.

Treatment and Prevention

The goal of treatment for PUD is to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and prevent further damage to the gastrointestinal tract. Treatment options can vary depending on the individual, but may include a combination of dietary changes, lifestyle modifications, and medications. Antibiotics, antacids, H2 blockers, and proton-pump inhibitors are the most common medications used to treat PUD. Additionally, surgery may be necessary in severe cases.

There are also a few lifestyle changes that can be made to help prevent PUD. These include reducing stress, avoiding trigger foods and beverages, eating smaller meals more frequently, and not lying down shortly after eating. Furthermore, quitting smoking and avoiding alcohol may help reduce the risk of PUD.