In order for your ulcer to heal and to reduce the chance it will come back, you will be given medicines to:
- Kill the H. pylori bacteria (if present)
- Reduce acid levels in the stomach
Take all of your medicines as your doctor recommends. Other changes in your lifestyle can also help.
If you have a peptic ulcer with an H. pylori infection, the standard treatment uses different combinations of the following medications for 7- 14 days:
- Two different antibiotics to kill H. pylori
- Proton pump inhibitors such as omeprazole (Prilosec), lansoprazole (Prevacid), or esomeprazole (Nexium)
- Bismuth (the main ingredient in Pepto-Bismol) may be added to help kill the bacteria
If you have an ulcer without an H. pylori infection, or one that is caused by taking aspirin or NSAIDs, your doctor will likely prescribe a proton pump inhibitor for 8 weeks.
You may also be prescribed this type of medicine if you must continue taking aspirin or NSAIDs for other health conditions.
Other medicines used for ulcers are:
- Misoprostol, a drug that may help prevent ulcers in people who take NSAIDs on a regular basis
- Medicines that protect the tissue lining (such as sucralfate)
If a peptic ulcer bleeds a lot, an EGD may be needed to stop the bleeding. Methods used to stop the bleeding include:
- Injecting medicine in the ulcer
- Applying metal clips to the ulcer
Surgery may be needed if:
- Bleeding cannot be stopped with an EGD
- The ulcer has caused a tear