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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so today I got to experience some lovely gut wrenching pain which caused me to vomit a good half dozen times. The last couple of times I saw what appeared to be specks of blood, not that much but just a little. I'm almost 100% certain they are blood. So I've thought for some time that I might have an ulcer and this pretty much confirms it. I've also had chronic heartburn for several years. Yeah, I know, I should've seen a doctor. So anyways, I'm making the appointment to see a doctor today so I can get everything sorted out. I've googled ulcers and so I already know what causes them and what they are and everything but I have no idea what to expect in terms of doctors visits, treatment, diet (I eat a 99% vegan diet), etc. So any of you out there who have had ulcers in the past, please pass on your experience and wisdom. Sugar coat 'em please, I don't want to get another ulcer


Thanks,

~Wondre
 

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My mother's story is a little different because she only found out she had an ulcer when it got bad enough to be life-threatening, so she spent a couple days in the hospital. She doesn't have to go to doctors a lot; usually if it's acting up she goes once to get a prescription for her pills and it clears up after a time.

You'll probably have an endoscopy. I've had it done under anesthesia and it's no big deal. If they don't put you under anesthesia, it's gag-inducing (my mother was awake for hers). You might need a colonoscopy too, which is also not as scary as it sounds. I had a little bit of pain for a few hours after mine, but other than that it was fine.

My mom can't really remember what she is and isn't supposed to eat, and the doctor didn't remind her last time she had a flare-up. I'd imagine you'd have to avoid acidic foods during flare-ups.

The good news is that ulcers aren't permanent aggravation. I don't know, maybe some people have them worse than others, but my mother just has flare-ups every couple of years (she might have minor problems in between the flare-ups--I don't know) and she doesn't have to take medication in between them.

Good luck! I hope everything goes all right.
 

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When I was diagnosed with my ulcer I didn't have much pain. I had a blood test that tested postive for Hpylori so I was put on antibiotic. I don't really remember what Hpylori is...I think it's a type of bacteria common with ulcers. My ulcer cleared up pretty quickly. I was also put on a prescription antacid. I had other issues so the ulcer wasn't the worst of it. I have also had two endoscopies from two different doctors, both with anesthesia. The second doctor wanted to do it without anesthesia but I refused, so he had to make arrangements to do it as an outpatient in the hospital. I also had a colonoscopy a few years ago. I had no problems with that procedure afterward.

I'm glad you are finally going to see a doctor. You can do a lot of damage to your esophagus if you have severe reflux that goes untreated. Please let us know how you make out after your visit.
 

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Most ulcers can be treated with antibiotics, which is so easy there's no reason not to feel better!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
My reflux hasn't been that bad since going veggie. I rarely need to take an antacid anymore. This whole throwing up blood thing kinda threw me for a loop. I'm pretty sure it's a stomach ulcer cause I can feel the pain directly below my sternum, plus the blood looked pretty fresh. I really really really really don't want an endoscopy, so hopefully they'll just test for the H pylori antibodies and give me the antibiotic prescription. I really don't think I'll need a colonoscopy. I'm 25 and eat tons of fiber, my colon's not going to tell them much about my ulcer. I really hope I'm just overworrying about this and it's really nothing. Thanks for your help


~Wondre
 

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Doctors tried to get me to do a colonoscopy when I was 21 and I told them where to shove it
It was to do an exclusionary diagnosis for IBS. Excluding it from what?? Colon cancer? Yea right.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yeah, so I woke up about an hour ago because my stomach was killing me. Apparently sleeping horizontally makes it unhappy. I really hope it's just sore from the vomitting, but yeah, no me gusta. Any food recommendations? I'd follow the BRAT diet but my bananas are green and I'm fresh out of apples. I'm gonna go make some tea.
 

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A little blood may be related to vomiting, but there is a slight chance for a Boerhaave syndrome, where vomiting results in fissures of the esophagus. And the chronic heartburn is of concern. If you suffer from helicobacter pylori, then a copmbined treatment of antibiotics and a protone-pump-inhinitor like omeprazole, lanzoprazole, or pantaprozole might help. If you want to be sure, what it is, have an endoscopy done.

Sauerkraut/kraut seems to be effective against helicobacter, but I know quite a lot of people saying they can't eat raw kraut because of the stomach.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have a distinct area of pain that I've had on 2 previous occasions, this being the first with vomiting. This is why I'm thinking it's either a stomach ulcer or gastritis, both of which are usually caused by H pylori, plus the only pain I have now is when I belch. But I'll ask my gut doctor about Boerhaave syndrome, because I'm pretty sure this is the first occurrence of bleeding because this was the first time I've noticed blood in my stool. But I'm really dreading have an endoscopy. I hate tubes, needles, and anathesia. I'm hoping I just test positive for H pylori and am lucky enough to avoid an antibiotic resistant strain.

I don't think I want to eat saurkraut because it's nasty. I heard that broccoli sprouts can get rid of H pylori:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/q..._uids=15387326

Thanks for the help.

~Wondre
 

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Don't be "traurig", you don't have to eat sauerkraut, it's only one of the lot of sources for "vitamin U" (I think the active part is methiosulfoniumchloride).
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Ok, so I went to the gut doctor today. He basically was unconcerned about the vomiting episode and the blood in the vomit. He was mainly concerned about the chronic heartburn I've had for the past few years and wants to do an endoscopy. I'm a little wary of having an endoscopy done considering the past couple of months my heartburn has drastically improved and I rarely have it anymore. Still, an endoscopy would be a good way to make sure I don't have any damage to my esophagus and make sure I don't have an ulcer. What do you guys thinks? Is my doctor a little too quick to recommend an endoscopy, especially considering how he didn't want to do a blood test to test for H pylori antibodies? Anybody have a similar experience? Thanks.

~Wondre
 

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I wouldn't be concerned about the endoscopy. It's really a minor procedure. If you do have an ulcer, the endoscopy will show it, and if you don't hopefully it will still help you pin down the problem.

My doctor decided to give me and endoscopy and colonoscopy after meeting me once. My doctor is an idiot, though, so I can't exactly say if that is good advice.
 

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Wonder i think its a good idea to do the endoscopy. chronic acid reflux can cause problems in the esophagus over time.

some things i tell my patients they can do to help are dont lay flat for 2-3 hours after eating,avoid things like chocolate, peppermint, caffeine, ( these all can weaken the muscle that prevents acid from going back up the esophagus from the stomach), also citrus fruits, tomatoes, hot peppers, black pepper, tomato juice, these can all irritate.avoid high fat foods, greasy foods, and alcohol.

there are also some drugs that can cause reflux ( nsaids come to mind first)........
 

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Hiya. I have ulcers too (the kind that don't clear up with antibiotics). I highly recommend a food log. After keeping one for several weeks, I found out I could eat almost anything in small amounts, at least, EXCEPT raw onions! Even a small amount of those sent me into misery. So, if you can identify the food (s) that your system really hates, it will make your life easier. I'll be sending positive thoughts your way as you go through this process. And I hope you'll do the endo-thing as you'll want to make sure all that acid hasn't caused any damage.
 

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Hey Wonder, have the endo thingy but also demand the H.pylori test too. ANd like Bonoluvr said, try not to eat anything for at least 3 hours before you go to bed. And you could elevate the head of your bed a few inches to help with the gastric reflux.

Garlic is an antimicrobial and may aid in the eradication of ulcers. Rhubarb, taken in juice or tablet form, is good for treating intestinal bleeding. Marshmallow root and slippery elm soothe irritated mucous membranes. There are many herbs that can be used to treat ulcers and gastric reflux. Just google it. But remember to discuss alternative treatments with your doctor first.
 
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