February 07, 2014

Ulcers in Esophagus



    The esophagus is the tube that carries food, liquid, and saliva from your mouth to the stomach. An esophageal ulcer is an open sore in the lining of the esophagus.


Causes


  • GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). This is a condition that occurs when acid from the stomach flows back into the esophagus. It is the most common cause of esophageal ulcerations.
  • Infection of the esophagus. This is caused by certain types of fungus, bacteria, or viruses such as herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) or cytomegalovirus (CMV).
  • Irritants that damage the esophagus. These include cigarette smoke, alcohol, and certain medications.
  • Excessive  or forced vomiting.
  • Certain types of treatments done on the esophagus. These include chemotherapy and radiation. 

Symptoms


  • Difficulty in swallowing or painful swallowing
  • Heartburn
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Herpes
  • Bleeding seen as blood in vomit or as darkening of the stools

Treatment


  • Proton pump inhibitors, such aslansoprazole (Prevacid) and omeprazole(Prilosec)
  • H2 blockers, such as cimetidine(Tagamet) and famotidine (Pepcid)
  • The University of Maryland Medical Center states that commonly used herbs for peptic ulcers include peppermint, cranberry and mastic. Mastic is a traditional remedy for this condition that may impair the growth of H. pylori. Other beneficial herbs for this common condition include comfrey, garlic, marshmallow root and cat's claw. However it is recommended to consult a physician before using a herbal remedy as it might have some side effects with the medications that are prescribed. 
  • To take in enough food without eating too much at any one time, at least six small meals should include nutritious, low-fat, soft and bland foods. Sip water throughout the day to get enough fluids without excessive volume. 
  • Slippery elm is a commonly used herb in the treatment of esophageal ulcers. The Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center states that slippery elm, an herbal remedy derived from the bark of the elm tree, is helpful for gastrointestinal problems such as ulcers and inflammation. The principle component of slippery elm is mucilage, which may be responsible for slippery elm's demulcent action. A demulcent is an agent that protects your mucus membranes by establishing a protective layer over inflamed areas.
  • Do not have foods that causes acidity in the stomach. Always eat food two hours before going to sleep


Sources

                 Ulcer Cureeinstein.edu,  yourgicenter.com,  WebMD,  UMM
                 Picture

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