If you are dealing with a digestive issue that suggests a stomach ulcer may have developed, your gastrointestinal specialist will conduct some tests to look for the presence of the ulcer. However, in spite of these symptoms, sometimes no evidence of a stomach ulcer is found. The lack of a stomach ulcer is a good thing, but it also doesn’t shine a light on why you’re experiencing this digestive discomfort. This condition is known as non-ulcer dyspepsia (NUD), and we’re going to take a closer look at how the issue is treated in today’s blog.
The Causes And Symptoms Of Non-Ulcer Dyspepsia
There is no known cause of non-ulcer dyspepsia, although there are some underlying risk factors and issues that may increase your likelihood of the condition. Non-ulcer dyspepsia tends to be more common in young adults and in women, and research has shown that the presence of the H. pylori bacteria can also trigger the condition.
Symptoms can vary significantly, and they may mimic other gastrointestinal disorders, like GERD or gastroparesis. However, the most common symptoms of the non-ulcer dyspepsia include:
- Abdominal discomfort
- Frequent bowel movements
Diagnosing And Treating Non-Ulcer Dyspepsia
If you’re dealing with any of the above symptoms, you’ll want to set up a consultation with your primary care physician or a gastrointestinal specialist like Dr. Bhatti. They’ll talk with you about your symptoms and conduct a short physical exam, and then they’ll likely progress to imaging tests. An upper endoscopy can help to look for issues or the presence of a stomach ulcer, but since no evidence of an ulcer is found during this test, a diagnosis of NUD is made after tests fail to reveal a different underlying cause. If ulcers, gallstones or certain types of cancers are ruled out, a diagnosis of non-ulcer dyspepsia may be given.
Despite the fact that you’re working to treat a condition without a specific cause or identifiable issue, certain treatment techniques tend to prove quite successful at managing symptoms. When there is no physical mechanism noted, as is the case with NUD, treatment oftentimes focuses on the psychological. Many patients find symptom relief by working to reduce stress, anxiety or similar emotional issues that may be manifesting into physical issues.
How patients confront these issues or lower stress levels is up to them, but many find it helpful to improve their diet and increase their exercise levels to aid in the production and release of stress regulating hormones. Certain medications may also serve to make symptoms less uncomfortable, but long-term relief tends to revolve around healthy lifestyle improvements and stress reduction.
If you have questions about non-ulcer dyspepsia or you’re dealing with uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms and are looking for answers, reach out to Dr. Bhatti and the team at Bhatti GI Consultants today at (952) 368-3800.