How are peptic ulcers treated?

If you have peptic ulcers, they can be cured. Depending on what caused your ulcers, your doctor may prescribe one or more of the following medicines:

A proton pump inhibitor (PPI) or a histamine receptor blocker (H2 blocker) to reduce the stomach acid and protect the lining of your stomach and duodenum. One or more antibiotics to kill a Helicobacter pylori (H.pylori) infection. A medicine that contains bismuth subsalicylate, such as Pepto-Bismol, to coat the ulcers and protect them from stomach acid.

These medicines will stop the pain and help heal the ulcers.

If a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) caused your peptic ulcers, your doctor may tell you to:

Stop taking the NSAID. Reduce your dose of the NSAID you take. Take a PPI or H2 blocker with the NSAID. Switch to another medicine that won't cause ulcers.

You should take:

Only the medicines your doctor tells you to take. All medicines exactly as your doctor tells you to, even if your pain stops

Tell your doctor if the medicines make you feel sick or dizzy or cause diarrhea or headaches. Your doctor can change your medicines.

And if you smoke, quit. You should also avoid alcohol. Smoking and drinking alcohol slow the healing of ulcers and can make them worse.

This information is based on source information from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.