You are currently viewing How to Beat the Bacteria That Cause Stomach Ulcers – H Pylori

How to Beat the Bacteria That Cause Stomach Ulcers – H Pylori

One Man’s Breakthrough

As recently as the 1980s leading medical experts still believed that the consumption of spicy foods and stress caused gastric ulcers. So they treated patients with antacids, tranquillisers, antidepressants, and psychotherapy. With limited efficacy.
Using himself as a guineapig he downed a broth containing the H. pylori bacterium, expecting to develop (perhaps years later) a peptic ulcer. After 3 days he was surprised to experience mild nausea and bad breath On day 8 he started vomiting.
Being able to spot H Pylori symptoms and get treatment is a quite recent development. And our success in doing so is largely down to one pioneering medic.
So also on day 8 he had an endoscopy. It showed massive inflammation of his stomach lining (gastritis). H pylori was isolated via a biopsy. Marshall’s work proved that bacteria could cause acute gastritis.
It was gastroenterologist Barry Marshall who showed that H pylori plays a major role in causing many peptic ulcers.
This challenged the common scientific consensus that no bacteria could survive in the acidic environment of the stomach.
If want to understand how this bacteria can succeed in an environment that was previously considered to be too harsh READ ON:

What is H Pylori?

Discover more about this intriguing little bug can cause so much discomfort. In fact it’s staggeringly common..
H. pylori (full name: Helicobacter Pylori) is a common type of bacteria that grows in the digestive tract. You may be surprised to hear this, but this stomach bug infects the stomach of roughly 50% of the world’s adult population–though, admittedly, 80% of those infected have symptoms. H. pylori infection is associated with low-grade inflammation of the stomach and duodenum (the first part of the small intestine that empties the stomach).
H. pylori is adapted to live in the harsh, acidic environment of the stomach. Its spiral shape allows the bacteria to burrow in and penetrate the stomach lining, which then causes low-grade inflammation. H. pylori is the most common cause of gastric ulcers and gastritis. More specifically, 10% of those infected with the stomach bug may develop an ulcer. More worryingly, perhaps, is that those infected also have an increased risk of stomach cancer and lymphoma.
Do you worry about having a peptic ulcer and are uncertain about diagnosis and treatment? H pylori symptoms and treatment – both natural and pharmaceutical – are laid out in this paper.

What causes H. pylori infection?

It’s still not known precisely how H. pylori infections spread. Regardless, it’s thought that the infections spread through saliva–and also has the potential to be spread by faecal contamination. These transmission methods may explain why the rate of infection is so high in poorer countries and socioeconomic groups characterised by crowded living conditions, poor sanitary conditions, and lack of clean water.
Interestingly, research indicates that most individuals with H. pylori bacteria get infected during childhood. After being ingested, the bacteria penetrate the stomach’s mucous lining to attach to deeper layers of the stomach, where they can reside for years without causing symptoms. HOW TO SPOT INFECTION:

What are the symptoms of H. pylori infection?

Most people with H. pylori don’t have any symptoms. For those who do, however, H. pylori infection typically manifests as gastritis and ulcers. The following H pylori symptoms characterise these illnesses:
  • Upper abdominal pain (i.e. burning sensation in the central upper abdomen)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Burping, bloating
  • Nausea and vomiting
Bleeding into the gastrointestinal tract, which is characterised by:
  • Hematemesis (i.e. vomiting blood)
  • The passing of black,
    tarry stools

If you have other symptoms that are troubling you then read our guide.

How are H. pylori infections diagnosed?

If your doctor suspects an H. pylori infection, your doctor may ask about your medical history and family history of disease. It’s crucial to inform your doctor of any medications you’re currently taking– including vitamins and supplements.
Because there are also other lifestyle-related causes of gastritis and ulcers, your doctor may ask you specific questions relating to smoking, alcohol consumptions, and non-steroidal antiinflammatory medication use (e.g. aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen).
To confirm the diagnosis, your doctor may also perform many other tests and procedures, including:
Physical examination – Your doctor will examine your stomach to check for signs of bloating, tenderness, or pain. A rectal examination may be performed to test for blood in the stool.
Blood test – Your blood samples will be used to test for the presence of the H. pylori bacteria, anaemia (low red blood cell count), and other diseases.

Diagnosis continued

Do note that in the event a gastric ulcer is found, an endoscopy is usually recommended since some ulcers have the potential to become cancerous. Ulcers in the duodenum typically do not have this potential.

HOW TO BEAT THE BACTERIA:
Stool test – Your stool sample will be used to check for signs of H. pylori in your faeces.
Endoscopy – This is where a gastroenterologist uses a thin tube containing a camera to examine the lining of the oesophagus, stomach, and duodenum to check for the presence of a stomach ulcer.
Upper GI series – The alternative to endoscopy in looking for a stomach ulcer. In this test, x-rays of the abdomen are taken after the patient swallows barium

What conventional treatment options are available for H. pylori infections?

If you do have an H. pylori infection, there are several treatment options available. That said, the therapy involves multiple steps–in addition to antibiotics to eradicate the bacteria. Another goal is to decrease the amount of acid secreted in your stomach and remove risk factors for further stomach irritation. As such, your doctor will typically prescribe a combination of the following.
  • Proton pump inhibitors, such as lansoprazole and omeprazole
  • H2 blockers, such as ranitidine and famotidine
In some cases, bismuth therapy with Pepto-Bismol is recommended especially if the first round of antibiotic treatment is unsuccessful. Just a note, though: this treatment is known to cause the blackening of stools.
Medication
A 2-week course of combination antibiotic therapy:
  • Clarithromycin
  • Metronidazole
  • Tetracycline
A minimum 2-week course of antacid therapy to decrease acid secretion in the stomach:
Lifestyle changes

Some lifestyle habits worsen a
peptic ulcer and prevent it from
healing (and so should be
avoided):

  • Alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Aspirin, Ibuprofen, and
    Naproxen (only to be taken
    with your healthcare
    provider’s approval)

I don’t fancy antibiotics, is there a more natural way to resolve H Pylori?

There are many natural remedies for H. pylori that are being used by nutritionists, in combination with conventional antibiotics or as an all-natural approach. Many of these have excellent research to support their use.
Eating probiotic-rich foods can help heal and eradicate H. pylori infections. Broccoli sprouts or Brussels sprouts cooked (about 3 ounces daily), cabbage juice, sauerkraut juice, cranberry juice (about 2 cups daily), green tea as you’d like, yogurt, apples, moderate amounts of red wine or red grape juice, onions, and capers all have antibacterial effects on H. pylori. If you want to use a natural treatment, here are some suggestions:
  • Deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL
  • Mastic gum
  • Zinc carnosine
  • Aloe vera juice: Use as directed three times daily after meals
  • Fermented soy (Sano-Gastril chewed or sucked between 2-3 meals
  • Oil of oregano
These natural agents form part of our natural programme for H Pylori eradication at IBS clinics, exact dosing varies from person to person, hence not given here. But of course we are ready to help if you want to know more.

References
Lipski, Elizabeth. Digestive Wellness:
Strengthen the Immune System and
Prevent Disease Through Healthy
Digestion.
Fourth Edition.
McGraw-Hill Education.

Should I go for H. pylori screening?

Here’s the truth. There’s no need to get screened for H. pylori unless you are experiencing discomfort or pain or suspect that have a peptic ulcer.
H pylori is routinely tested for by IBS Clinics as just one of the markers included in a comprehensive stool test giving you reassurance that these types of worrying conditions are screened for.