H Pylori Infection

H. Pylori  also known as Helicobacter Pylori is a bacteria residing in your stomach lining or the upper area of the small intestine. Some of the common symptoms of H. Pylori are a burning sensation in the stomach or intestinal area, burping too often than before, nausea and also bloating of your stomach. If you feel you have been infected by H. Pylori, consult your doctor for the right medications. The treatment process may include antibiotics and several medications prescribed by the doctor for a week or two, after which you would be able to feel the difference.

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H Pylori Infection

H Pylori Infection

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Causes of H Pylori Infection

While they can cause stomach problems, the bacteria do so first by penetrating the stomach’s mucous membrane and then generating substances that can neutralize the stomach’s acids. This can make the stomach cells much more vulnerable to the stomach’s harsh acids, and both the bacteria and stomach acid irritate the stomach lining resulting in ulcers within the stomach itself or in the duodenum (small intestine).

  • It is still unknown the manner in which an H. pylori infection will spread. H Pylori has co-existed with humans for thousands of years in history.
  • Some think that the injections re spread via mouth to mouth contact.
  • H pylori are also claimed to transfer from feces to mouth, which can happen when people do not thoroughly wash their hands after using the washroom.
  • H. pylori also has the potential to spread via contact with any contaminated water or food.

H pylori Symptoms

Most individuals who are infected with H Pylori do not show any signs or symptoms. Once the infection has proliferated and an ulcer has formed, symptoms show up in the form of abdominal pain, especially when your stomach is empty. The pain is typically a gnawing kind in nature, and it may come and go. Taking antacid drugs or eating can relieve this h pylori infection symptom. If you have a strong pain that does not seem to go away or this kind of gnawing pain, you should pay a visit to the doctor.

A slew of symptoms are often associated with H Pylori infections, including

  • burping excessively
  • nausea
  • fever
  • heartburn
  • unexplained weight loss
  • a lack of appetite
  • feeling bloated

It is recommended that you see your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following:

  • anemia
  • trouble swallowing
  • blood in the stool

However, these symptoms are generalized and could be the result of other conditions. Some symptoms of H Pylori can also be seen in healthy people. If any of these symptoms persist for you, it is always recommended to see your doctor. If you notice a black color in your vomit or feces, in addition to blood, it is vital to consult with your doctor immediately.

H Pylori in Women:

Symptoms of H pylori in women are as follows

  • An ache or burning pain in one’s abdomen.
  • Abdominal pain that's worse when the stomach is empty.
  • Nausea and headaches.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Frequent burping and indigestion.
  • Unexplained bloating.
  • Unintentional weight loss.

H Pylori in Men:

Symptoms of H pylori in men do not differ from those seen in women. They are as follows.

  • An ache, burning pain in one’s abdomen
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Abdominal discomfort that grows worse on an empty stomach.
  • Nausea and headaches.
  • Frequent burping and indigestion.
  • Unexplained bloating after meals.
  • Unintentional weight loss.

Risk Factors of H Pylori

It is much more likely for a child to develop the infection than an adult. The reason is that children may not practice proper hygiene and therefore transfer the bacteria to themselves. Other risk factors include:

  • Living in a developing country
  • Living in housing conditions that are overcrowded
  • Not having access to hot water, which can not only keep areas clean but also free of bacteria
  • Sharing a home with somebody who is infected with H. pylori

It is now known that peptic ulcers are the result of H Pylori infections and not because of stress or consuming foods that are high in acids.

H Pylori Mode of Transmission

H Pylori is transmitted in the following ways

  • Person to person: H. pylori bacteria may be passed from person to person through direct contact with saliva, vomit, or fecal matter.
  • Contaminated food or water: H. pylori may also be spread through contaminated food or water.

H Pylori cannot be transmitted through contact like hand-holding, hugging, or toilet seats. Once infected, H Pylori can take weeks, or ears to show its first symptoms in the form of sores on the body.

H Pylori Diagnosis

H Pylori can be diagnosed in a variety of ways, some of which are more effective diagnostic tests than others.

  • Blood tests can be used to determine whether you have an H. pylori infection. Analysis of a blood sample may reveal evidence of an active or previous H. pylori infection in the body.
  • However, breath and stool tests are better at detecting active H. pylori infections than a blood test.
  • Finally, the most accurate way to assess for an H Pylori infection is a biopsy, where a tissue sample is taken from the stomach lining.

Complications of H Pylori

H Pylori infections can result in peptic ulcers, but the infection or the ulcer itself can result in more serious complications that include:

  • obstruction, which can happen when a tumor blocks any foods from leaving your stomach.
  • internal bleeding, that is the result of a peptic ulcer breaking through your blood vessel, and being associated with an iron deficiency.
  • peritonitis, an infection of the peritoneum, or the abdominal lining cavity
  • perforation, that can happen when an ulcer burst through your stomach wall
  • an increased risk of developing stomach cancer, but this outcome is rare.

H pylori treatment

  • Medications like clarithromycin, lansoprazole, esomeprazole, metronidazole, and amoxicillin are effective treatments for this infection.
  • Lifestyle and diet changes avoiding spicy foods, smoking, and drinking are recommended.

H Pylori Home Remedies

● Probiotics:

Probiotics help maintain the balance between good and bad gut bacteria and can aid in strengthening the immune system and digestive tract’s overall health.

● Green tea:

 A 2009 study on mice showed that green tea may help kill and slow the growth of Helicobacter bacteria.

● Honey:

 Switching sugar for honey can work in your favor as sugar throws off the gut’s bacteria while honey has a gentler and anti-inflammatory effect on the gut’s lining

● Broccoli sprouts:

A compound in broccoli sprouts called sulforaphane has been shown in a study on mice as somewhat effective against H. pylori.

H Pylori Prevention

The source of H. pylori is unclear. For this reason, there are no formal recommendations as per the Centre for Disease Control to prevent it. In general, it’s recommended that one practice good hygiene by frequently washing your hands and properly preparing your food. If you’re diagnosed with H. pylori, complete your full course of treatment to reduce your risk of recurrence.

The Bottom Line

Ensure you take the recommended medical course as prescribed by your doctor to deal with H Pylori. The variety of health insurance options available can cover your finances in case you are afflicted with this infection. With compensation for one’s hospitalization expenses, prescription costs, doctor's visits, and more, you are promised a comprehensive coverage. 

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