H. pylori & Peptic Ulcer Disease | Diagnosis | MedStar Health

Peptic ulcer disease is a sore or multiple sores on the inside of the stomach. The most common symptom is dull or burning stomach pain, but some people also experience bloating, burping, nausea, vomiting, and weight loss.

Risk factors

Risk factors include long term aspirin or ibuprofen or other arthritis medication use, infection with the bacteria Helicobacter pylori (H.pylori), smoking or alcohol use, or (rarely) tumors in the stomach.

Gastric Ulcers

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An ulcer is a sore that damages the lining of the stomach. Symptoms of a gastric ulcer can include abdominal pain that occurs after a meal, nausea, vomiting, weight loss and fatigue.


Diagnosis of a peptic ulcer is done by an Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD), which is a small camera inserted in the nose or mouth while the patient is asleep to examine and biopsy the stomach if needed. Other exams include X-ray study, blood, or specific bacteria in the stool, and breath tests.


Many times, peptic ulcer disease is usually treated with a Proton pump inhibitor (PPI) such as omeprazole (Prilosec, Zegerid), lansoprazole (Prevacid), pantoprazole (Protonix), rabeprazole (Aciphex), esomeprazole (Nexium), and dexlansoprazole (Kapidex). If the ulcer was caused by aspirin, ibuprofen or other arthritis medication, the doctor may recommend discontinuing those medications, if possible.

Our providers

Dr Nadim Haddad talks with a patient during an office visit at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital.

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