Stomach ulcers are more predominant in adults than children, but do occasionally occur. A stomach ulcer can be located in the duodenum, which is the first section of the small intestine, or it can be located in the stomach. Digestive fluids (called pepsin) cause ulcers in both cases. Both types of ulcers are also called peptic ulcers. An ulcer located in the stomach is also sometimes referred to as a gastric ulcer.
Years ago, it was believed that ulcers were caused by spicy food and stress. Researchers have since discovered that bacterium called helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is the culprit.
The bacterium erodes the protective lining of the stomach, allowing digestive fluids to cause sores. Doctors also now know that anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen and aspirin can deteriorate the stomach’s protective lining as well.
If it is found that your child has an ulcer, he may be prescribed antibiotics and an H2 blocker. The antibiotics will kill the H. pylori and the H2 blocker will reduce the production of stomach acids to allow the ulcer to heal.
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