Types of Ulcers
Ulcers come in many types, but some types are more common than others. Examples include peptic, arterial, venous, mouth and genital ulcers.
Peptic ulcers develop in the upper portion of the small intestine, esophagus or the lining of the stomach. Arterial ulcers form outside the body on ankles, feet, toes and heels when damage occurs to the artery, restricting blood flow to tissue and slowing down healing. Toe ulcer treatment includes antibiotics, compression garments and topical wound care. Your doctor can help you find the best treatment for skin ulcers, depending on the type you have and the symptoms.
Mouth ulcers, or canker sores, are found inside the mouth at the base of the gums. The primary causes are brushing your teeth too hard, biting the inside of your cheek, certain food allergies, hormonal changes, vitamin deficiencies and bacterial infections. Symptoms include loss of appetite, swollen skin and tenderness of the gums.
Venous ulcers are a common type of leg ulcer that looks like an open wound below the knee. They are caused by insufficient flow of blood back to the heart, leading to swelling, scabbing, discharge, inflammation and itchy skin. Treatments for leg ulcers include staying active, cleaning the wound and compression treatment. It's important to keep the wound clean and dry.
Genital ulcers are mostly caused by sexually transmitted diseases and come in the form of a rash or bumps in the affected area. They sometimes cause a fever, pain, itching and swollen glands. Genital ulcers can also occur from inflammatory diseases, allergic reactions, bad reactions to skincare products and trauma.
Decubitus ulcers, or bedsores, are found mainly in people with decreased mobility and those who spend a lot of time in beds and wheelchairs. Treatment for decubitus ulcers includes medications to treat infections, surgery, antibacterial drugs, cleaning the wound and keeping the site clean.
Signs and Symptoms of Stomach Ulcers
Some of the most common symptoms associated with stomach ulcers include nausea, heartburn, burning stomach pain, an intolerance to fatty foods and bloating. Other less common symptoms include trouble breathing, vomiting, dark blood in stools, changes in appetite, feeling faint and unexplained weight loss. To minimize the risk of stomach ulcers, switch to a healthy diet and decrease painkiller usage. It also helps to get plenty of sleep and limit alcohol and physical activity. If you think you might have an ulcer, keep a close eye on how you feel. If you have severe back pain, feel faint or vomit blood, you need to see a doctor immediately.