Gastric pain is commonly used to describe pain or discomfort in the upper abdomen. Other symptoms typically include heartburn, bloating, belching and nausea,” say doctors from the Department of Gastroenterology & Herpetology, Singapore General Hospital (SGH), a member of the Sing Health group.
Gastritis is inflammation of the lining of the stomach. It may occur as a short episode or may be of a long duration. There may be no symptoms but, when symptoms are present, the most common is upper abdominal pain. Other possible symptoms include nausea and vomiting, bloating, loss of appetite and heartburn. Complications may include bleeding, stomach ulcers, and stomach tumors.When due to autoimmune problems, low red blood cells due to not enough vitamin B12 may occur, a condition known as pernicious anemia.
Common causes include infection with Helicobacter pylori and use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).Less common causes include alcohol, smoking, cocaine, severe illness, autoimmune problems, radiation therapy and Crohn’s disease. Endoscopy, a type of X-ray known as an upper gastrointestinal series, blood tests, and stool tests may help with diagnosis. The symptoms of gastritis may be a presentation of a myocardial infarction. Other conditions with similar symptoms include inflammation of the pancreas, gallbladder problems, and peptic ulcer disease.
Prevention is by avoiding things that cause the disease. Treatment includes medications such as antacids, H2 blockers, or proton pump inhibitors. During an acute attack drinking viscous lidocaine may help. If gastritis is due to NSAIDs these may be stopped. If H. pylori is present it may be treated with a combination of antibiotics such as amoxicillin and clarithromycin. For those with pernicious anemia, vitamin B12 supplements are recommended either by mouth or by injection. People are usually advised to avoid foods that bother them.
Signs and symptoms
Many people with gastritis experience no symptoms at all. However, upper central abdominal pain is the most common symptom; the pain may be dull, vague, burning, aching, gnawing, sore, or sharp.Pain is usually located in the upper central portion of the abdomen, but it may occur anywhere from the upper left portion of the abdomen around to the back.
Other signs and symptoms may include the following:
Loss of appetite
Unexplained weight loss
tips to prevent gastric pain
Whether your gastric pain is diagnosed as non-ulcer dyspepsia or due to a more specific cause, making some simple lifestyle changes can lower your risk of experiencing gastric pain symptoms:
Eat smaller but more frequent meals. If you often suffer from indigestion, have five to six smaller meals a day, rather than three square meals.
Eat on time and avoid skipping meals. This will accustom your stomach to release its gastric juices only during at mealtimes and not erratically.
Consume less irritating foods. Cutting down on spicy, acidic, fried or fatty foods helps reduce gastric symptoms and allows your stomach to heal.
Drink alcohol in moderation. Excessive amounts of alcohol may weaken your stomach’s protective lining, making you more susceptible to ulcers.
Quit smoking. Smoking increases the production of stomach acid, slows down healing and increases your risk of getting stomach cancer.
Better manage your stress. High stress increases the production of gastric juices in your stomach. Exercise regularly and adopt relaxation activities such as yoga to keep your stress in check.