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Peptic Ulcers

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Marked by a burning sensation caused from a wound in the lining of your stomach (gastric ulcer) or your duodenum (duodenal ulcer), peptic ulcers develop when the acids that help you digest food damage the walls of your stomach or duodenum (first part of the small intestine). Contrary to popular belief, stress and spicy food do not cause peptic ulcers, but they can make symptoms worse.

If you have a peptic ulcer, it was most likely caused by an infection from bacteria called Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), or by long-term use of certain medications and painkillers such as aspirin, ibuprofen (such as Advil or Motrin), and naproxen sodium (such as Aleve or Anaprox).

Although it’s possible not to experience any symptoms, the most common peptic ulcer symptom is a burning sensation or pain in your belly between your breastbone and your belly button. The pain usually happens before or after meals and at night, lasting from a few minutes to a few hours.

Less common, but more severe, ulcer symptoms may include:

  • Bloody or black stool
  • Excessive burping
  • Feeling full after eating a small amount of food
  • Losing weight without trying
  • Nausea
  • Not feeling hungry at all for several days
  • Vomiting
  • Vomiting blood

Several conditions have similar symptoms to peptic ulcers; therefore, it’s important that you be seen by a medical professional to ensure an accurate diagnosis.

Why Choose UHealth?

A motility lab for accurate diagnosis of GI conditions. The only facility of its kind in South Florida, our motility lab enables our GI specialists to provide accurate diagnoses of GI conditions more quickly and efficiently. We offer a variety of leading-edge services, such as hydrogen breath testing, anal-rectal manometry, and bio-feedback.

A broad array of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures.  Regardless of your age, condition, or whether you need long- or short-term digestive treatments, you will receive the most accurate diagnosis and most effective treatment to keep your stomach, digestive system, and organs healthy.

Questions? We're here to help.

Our appointment specialists are ready to help you find what you need. Contact us today.

Treatments

  • Medications

    Your GI doctor may prescribe medication to reduce your stomach acids.

  • Antibiotics

    Your GI doctor may prescribe antibiotic medication to kill the H. pylori bacteria.

  • Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD)

    This treatment is used for peptic ulcers that are bleeding a lot or not healing.

  • Surgery

    Surgery may be required if the EGD fails and the ulcer has caused a tear.

  • Lifestyle Modifications

    You should avoid drinking too much alcohol, smoking cigarettes, or chewing tobacco.

     

     

Tests

  • Blood test

    A blood test can check for infection-fighting cells (antibodies) that indicate you have H. pylori.

  • Upper Gastrointestinal (GI) Series

    This test checks your esophagus, stomach, and the first part of your small intestine. You will swallow a metallic fluid called barium to make your organs visible on an X-ray.

  • Upper Endoscopy or EGD (Esophagogastroduodenoscopy)

    This test looks at the lining or inside of your esophagus, stomach, and your small intestine using a thin, lighted tube that has a camera at one end (endoscope). We place the tube into your stomach through your mouth.

  • Stool Culture

  • This can check for the presence of H. pylori bacteria.

  • Urea Breathe Test

    This test checks to see how much carbon dioxide is in your breath when you exhale. If you have H. pylori, the urea will break down and become carbon dioxide. You will have a sample taken of your breath by breathing into a bag.

Accepted Insurances

Note: Health plans that are currently contracted with UHealth are listed below. However, please check with your insurance provider to verify that UHealth is part of your provider network.

  • Aetna WC
  • Aetna Affiliates/Signature Adm (ASA)
  • Aetna Behavioral Health
  • Aetna Elect Choice (EPO)
  • Aetna Florida Healthy Kids
  • Aetna HMO
  • Aetna Medicaid HMO
  • Aetna Medicare HMO
  • Aetna Medicare PPO
  • Aetna POS
  • Aetna PPO
  • Aetna UM Employee HMO 1
  • Aetna UM Employee HMO 2
  • Aetna UM Employee POS HRA
  • Aetna/Coventry Institutes of Excellence (IOE)
  • Amerigroup Florida Healthy Kids
  • Amerigroup Medicaid HMO
  • Argus Vision
  • AvMed Choice
  • AvMed HMO/POS
  • AvMed MDC and JHS Groups
  • AvMed Medicare HMO
  • AXIS
  • BCBS Blue Options Network Blue PPO
  • BCBS BlueCare HealthOptions HMO
  • BCBS BlueChoice PPC/PPO
  • BCBS Miami Dade Blue PPO Limited Benefits Plan
  • BCBS of Florida (All products except "SELECT" Plans)
  • BCBS of Florida (Commercial plans exclude HIX Select)
  • BCBS Traditional PHS/PPO
  • Beacon Health (ValueOption)
  • Beech Street PPO
  • Broward Health Medical Center
  • CarePlus Medicare HMO
  • Catholic Hospice
  • CCP/CMS Title XIX (Medicaid Enrolled in South Florida)
  • CCP/CMS Title XXI (Non Medicaid Enrolled in South Florida)
  • CCP/MMA (Broward County residents)
  • Charlotte County Sheriffs Office PPO
  • Cigna Affiliates
  • Cigna Behavioral Health
  • Cigna Dental HMO/PPO
  • Cigna EPO
  • Cigna HMO
  • Cigna Life Source (Intracorp is part of Cigna Lifesource)
  • Cigna MDCPS Jackson Sr. High
  • Cigna POS
  • Cigna PPO
  • Cigna Shared Administration
  • Clear Health Alliance SNP Medicaid HMO
  • CompCare (Comprehensive Behavioral Care)
  • Concordia Behavioral Health
  • CorVel WC
  • Coventry First Health WC
  • Coventry Health Care of Florida (HIP) HMO/POS
  • Coventry Health Care of Florida (HIP) PPO
  • Coventry Health Plan of Florida (Foundation) HMO
  • Coventry Health Plan of Florida (Foundation) POS
  • Coventry National PPO
  • Coventry Summit Medicare HMO
  • Coventry Vista Medicare HMO
  • Coventry Vista Medicare HMO
  • Delta Dental PPO
  • DentaQuest (ADI)
  • DIKLA
  • Dimension WC
  • Dimension Plus PPO
  • EHN PPO
  • EQUIAN (Health Systems International)
  • Europe Assistance/Global Corporate Solutions (Care Management Network)
  • eyeQuest
  • FCCI WC
  • Florida Healthcare Plan (Affiliate of BCBSFL)
  • Florida PACE (FPC)
  • Freedom Health Medicaid HMO
  • Freedom Health Medicare HMO
  • Gallagher Bassett WC (MDCPS & FCSRMC)
  • Global Excel Mgt PPO
  • Global Health Claims Services
  • Great West (Cigna) HMO/POS
  • Guardian Life PPO
  • HAA Preferred Partners
  • Health First Health HMO/POS
  • Health First Health Medicare HMO
  • Health First Health PPO
  • Health Net Veterans Choice HMO
  • Heritage Summit Healthcare WC
  • Humana Behavioral Health (LifeSynch)
  • Humana Dental/CompBenefits/OHS
  • Humana EPO
  • Humana HMO
  • Humana HUMx
  • Humana Medicaid HMO
  • Humana Medicare HMO
  • Humana National Transplant
  • Humana PPO
  • Humana Premier
  • iCare Health Solutions
  • Interlink Health Services
  • International Kids Fund (IKF)
  • League Medical Concepts Federal Inmates
  • Life Trac
  • Magellan Behavioral Health
  • Magellan Complete Care SNP Medicaid HMO
  • MDAbroad
  • Medica Medicare HMO
  • Medical Development In't (MDI)-Federal Inmates
  • Medicus
  • Metlife Dental PPO
  • MHNet Behavioral Network (MHNet)
  • Molina
  • Molina Market Place
  • Molina Medicaid HMO
  • Molina Medicare HMO
  • Morgan White International
  • MultiPlan PPO
  • Naphcare (Federal Prisoners)
  • National Healthcare Solutions Inc.
  • Neighborhood HealthPlan HMO/POS
  • Neighborhood HealthPlan PPO
  • North Broward Hospital District PPO
  • Olympus Managed Healthcare
  • Optum
  • Positive Healthcare SNP Medicaid HMO
  • Positive Healthcare SNP Medicare HMO
  • Prestige Health Choice Medicaid HMO
  • Prime Health Services WC
  • Quality Health Management
  • Religious Order of Jehovah's Witnesses PPO
  • Rockport Healthcare Group WC
  • Royal Caribbean Cruises PPO
  • Sanus Health Corporation
  • Simply Healthcare Medicaid HMO
  • Solstice Dental HMO/PPO
  • Start Healthcare Network
  • Sunshine
  • Sunshine AMBETTER
  • Sunshine Healthy Kids HMO
  • Sunshine Medicaid HMO
  • Sunshine Medicare HMO
  • Tricare South Prime HMO
  • Tricare South Standard PPO
  • United Behavioral Health (UBH)
  • UnitedHealthcare Affiliates
  • UnitedHealthcare Healthy Kids HMO
  • UnitedHealthcare HMO/POS
  • UnitedHealthcare Medicaid HMO
  • UnitedHealthcare Medicare Nursing Home Plan
  • UnitedHealthcare PPO
  • University of Miami Athletic Dept PPO
  • VUMI
  • Wellcare/Staywell Healthy Kids HMO
  • Wellcare/Staywell Medicaid HMO
  • Wexford Health State Inmates
  • Worldwide Managed Care