What is Helicobacter Pylori?

Helicobacter Pylori (H. Pylori) is a common bacteria that lives and grows in your digestive tract. Around 60 percent of the world’s adult population have infections with these bacteria. Though usually harmless, the H. Pylori can attack your stomach lining. As a result, diseases such as peptic ulcers and gastritis can develop.

How Does H. Pylori Cause A Peptic Ulcer?

H. Pylori is a spiral-shaped bacteria. The spiral shape allows them to penetrate your stomach lining. Once there, the mucous lining of your stomach shields them from your body’s immune system. This process will leave your stomach lining vulnerable to your stomach acid. As a result, damage and bleeding ulcers will develop.

What are the symptoms of an ulcer?

When the Helicobacter Pylori infection leads to an ulcer, certain symptoms will manifest. Symptoms such as:

  • Stomach or abdominal pain doesn’t go away, comes on an empty stomach or a few hours after a meal
  • Burping more than normal
  • Feeling of bloatedness
  • Nauseousness and vomiting
  • Heartburn
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite, anorexia

Some people experience only very mild symptoms, or none at all.

Emergency Symptoms of Helicobacter Pylori

There are certain symptoms of ulcers that need urgent medical attention. See your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Bloody stools
  • Anemia – fatigue, dizzy spells, pale skin, leg cramps
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Bloody vomit

Keep in mind that other conditions can cause these symptoms. A proper medical exam and testing will need to be done to determine if H. Pylori is the culprit of your symptoms.

How Ulcers From H. Pylori Get Diagnosed?

Your medical doctor will take a complete medical history first. Asking you what your current symptoms are and if you’re currently on any medications. Next is the physical exam. During the exam, your doctor will be checking the belly for swelling, tenderness, or pain. The following testing can be done, too, depending on your unique situation. Testing such as:

  • Blood and stool test
  • Urea breath test
  • Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy
  • Upper GI testing
  • CT Scan

How is an H. Pylori -related ulcer treated?

H. Pylori and Peptic Ulcer
Treatment of H. Pylori centers around 3 goals. Killing the bacteria, healing your stomach lining, and prevention of ulcers coming back. Your medical doctor will have a variety of medications for effective treatments, such as antibiotics, antihistamines, and stomach pump blockers. These types of medications will either kill the bacteria or reduce your stomach acid.

On average, most patients experience relief in about 1-2 weeks of treatment. After you finish treatment, your doctor will re-test you again to make sure the infection is gone for good.

Today, gastroenterology conditions can be treated effectively. if diagnosed early with a colonscopy, these cancers can be cured with excellent outcomes. We provide everyone a personalized gastroenterology treatment plan to meet your unique needs and improve your quality of life. Contact our gastroenterology and hepatology center to schedule a consolation with Los Angeles’ preferred Gastroenterologist– Dr. Tabib.

Dr. Tabib’s completed his postgraduate fellowship, residency, and internships at the UCLA/Cedar-Sinai Medical Center.

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Siamak Tabib, M.D., Inc.
8631 W 3rd St Suite 1015E,
Los Angeles, CA 90048

(310) 683-4911

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