Gastritis - Describe Your Experience

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Gastritis facts

  • Gastritis is inflammation of the stomach lining and is usually termed acute or chronic gastritis.
  • The two major causes of gastritis are 1) a bacterium named Helicobacter pylori or H. pylori and 2) nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). However there are many other causes like other infectious agents, autoimmune problems, diseases like Crohn's disease, sarcoidosis, and isolated granulomatosis gastritis.
  • Although many individuals with gastritis may have no symptoms, both acute and chronic gastritis may have symptoms of
    • abdominal pain,
    • nausea,
    • vomiting, and
    • occasionally, belching, bloating, loss of appetite and indigestion.
  • Gastritis can be diagnosed by the patient's symptoms and history (for example, NSAID and/or alcohol consumption), or by breath, blood, stool, immunological, and biopsy tests to detect H. pylori and other tests such as endoscopy or radiologic studies demonstrate mucosal changes.
  • The treatment for gastritis varies according to the cause.
    • H. pylori usually is treated with a combination of antibiotics.
    • NSAID's are treated by stopping the drug and using antacids, histamine blockers or proton pump inhibitors or PPIs, for example, omeprazole (Prilosec, Prilosec OTC), omeprazole (Prilosec, Prilosec OTC), rabeprazole (Aciphex), rabeprazole (Aciphex), esomeprazole (Nexium), and Zegerid, a rapid release form of omeprazole.
    • Other less common causes may be treated similarly, but do not treat the underlying cause.
  • Home remedies (for example, over-the-counter antacids or histamine blockers) for gastritis usually do not treat the underlying cause, but reduce symptoms.
  • Foods and chemical irritants that cause or aggravate gastritis symptoms should be reduced or stopped all together. For example:
    • Stop cigarette smoking.
    • Avoid drinking excessive amounts of alcohol.
    • Avoid caffeinated, decaffeinated, and carbonated dinks; and fruit juices that contain citric acid, for example, grapefruit, orange, pineapple, etc.
    • Avoid high-fat foods.
  • The growth of H. pylori may be stopped by a diet rich in fiber, and foods that contain flavonoids, for example:
    • Certain teas
    • Onions
    • Garlic
    • Berries
    • Celery
    • Kale
    • Broccoli
    • Parsley
    • Thyme
    • Soy foods
    • Legumes
  • Complications from acute gastritis are rare.
  • Complications from chronic gastritis include peptic ulcer, bleeding ulcers, anemia, gastric cancers, MALT lymphoma, renal problems, strictures, bowel obstruction, or even death.
  • People with acute gastritis usually recover completely with no complications.
  • Chronic gastritis may have a range of outcomes from good (early treatment) to poor if serious complications develop.
  • If underlying causes of gastritis (for example, alcohol or NSAID's usage) are treated or not used, gastritis also may be prevented.
  • Other gastritis prevention techniques include:
  • To prevent infectious causes of gastritis practice good hand washing techniques, for example, wash the hands thoroughly and frequently.
  • To reduce the risk of gastritis avoid situations where you are exposed to chemicals, radiation, or toxins.
Return to Gastritis

See what others are saying

Comment from: klc831stc, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: January 04

I had been severely nauseated and had flushed feeling for about a month. My symptoms took a turn for the worse when I didn't have a bowel movement for 6 days. The 6th day I had fever, shaking, chills, severe upper abdominal pain, bloating, uncontrollable vomiting and ended up in the emergency room. I was given two IV bags of fluid, morphine, and Dilaudid. They did an ultrasound and lab tests which showed my liver, pancreas and gallbladder were fine (I couldn't believe they were saying nothing was wrong). They ended up diagnosing me with gastritis. I do have a history of heavy NSAID use, and I used to drink quite a bit too. I was given omeprazole and famotidine for the acid, and Zofran for my nausea, and Tums. They also put me on a bland diet. I have seen some relief but not much, the diet is really hard, I still have the nausea daily, and my pain is better but still interrupts my daily life. I have bubbles of gas I can feel moving around constantly and I am so tired all the time. I would like to know what has worked for people because I wouldn't wish this on anyone.

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Comment from: fungooleyruley, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 12

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in October 2012 and part of my treatment was radiation therapy. Not long after that I was diagnosed with gastritis after having an endoscopy and colonoscopy to work out what was causing my symptoms. I was prescribed Nexium which seemed to work for me and the symptoms subsided until last week. I also suffer from diverticulosis which has flared up into diverticulitis on two occasions, one being very recently, and subsequently I was hospitalized for IV antibiotic treatment for 48 hours. It's been a real roller coaster ride for me these past few years and now that the gastritis has once again reared its ugly head I will just have to try harder to avoid things that are causing it, like soft drinks. After all is said and done though, it would appear as though in my case the initial cause was the radiation treatment for the breast cancer. Life can sure be cruel sometimes!

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