Treatment Gastroenterology

Ulcers
Treatments

Peptic ulcers caused by the bacteria Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) are usually treated with a combination of antibiotics that kill the bacteria as well as other drugs to reduce stomach acid and protect the stomach lining. The use of only one medication to treat H. pylori is not recommended.

At this time, the most proven effective treatment is a two-week course of treatment called triple therapy. It involves taking two antibiotics to kill the bacteria and an acid suppressor known as a proton-pump inhibitor (PPI). By decreasing the amount of acid in the stomach, PPIs are used to heal stomach ulcers, including those caused by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), and duodenal ulcers. Two-week triple therapy reduces ulcer symptoms, kills the bacteria and prevents the ulcer from recurring in more than 90 percent of patients.

Ulcers caused by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) usually heal once the person stops taking the medication. To help the healing process and relieve symptoms, your doctor may recommend taking PPIs to neutralize the acid and drugs called H2-blockers to decrease the amount of acid the stomach produces.

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.

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