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Stomach ulcers in children

Children with a stomach ulcer

Stomach ulcers is not an "adult disease". Children can also develop stomach ulcers.

Why do children develop stomach ulcers?

Researchers are not sure of the exact reason children develop stomach ulcers. Unlike adults who develop stomach ulcers mostly as a result of a h. pylori infection, children do not usually develop stomach ulcers because of h. pylori infections. It is believed that many children develop stomach ulcers as a result of medication.

Certain medical conditions can also cause stomach ulcers in children. Children with severe burns can develop ulcers secondary to the stress and trauma of their injuries. Infants who become septic, or very ill with a bacterial infection also have an increased risk of developing a stomach ulcer. In otherwise healthy kids, stomach ulcers are very unusual.

Symptoms of a stomach ulcer

The most common symptoms of a child with a stomach ulcer are:

  • burning pain in the abdomen between the breastbone and the belly button (the most common ulcer symptom)
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • chest pain (usually dull and achy)
  • loss of appetite
  • frequent burping or hiccuping
  • weight loss
  • feeding difficulties
  • blood in vomit
  • black bowel movements
  • red bowel movements
  • **if the symptoms are gone, it doesn't mean that the stomach ulcer is gone

What to do if your child has a stomach ulcer

If your child is diagnosed with an h. pylori-related ulcer, make sure that your child takes all of the medications as directed by the doctor. Follow the instructions that the doctor has given you even if the symptoms have disappeared. If the symptoms are no longer present, it doesn't mean that the infection is gone.

If your child has a medicine-related ulcer, her doctor will tell you to avoid the medications that caused the ulcer, including any medication containing ibuprofen or aspirin. Also, be sure to give your child the medication prescribed by the doctor.

Back to Stomach Ulcers

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