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Gastritis

Gastritis services offered in Richmond, Colonial Heights, Midlothian, N. Chesterfield, Short Pump, Henrico and Mechanicsville, VA

Gastritis (inflammation in your stomach lining) has several possible causes. At their eight offices in Richmond, Colonial Heights, Chesterfield, Henrico, and Mechanicsville, Virginia, the Richmond Gastroenterology Associates team excels at diagnosing gastritis and finding effective treatments. They can treat conditions ranging from bacterial infections and medication overuse to autoimmune disorders. To get a prompt diagnosis and treatment, call Richmond Gastroenterology Associates today or book an appointment online.

Gastritis Q & A

What is gastritis?

Gastritis is inflammation in your stomach lining. It can be chronic (lasting a long time) or acute (sudden and short-lived). Many conditions can lead to gastritis, including:

  • Helicobacter pylori (H.pylori) infection
  • Overuse of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Excessive aspirin use
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Spicy foods
  • Thinning of the stomach lining as you age
  • Autoimmune atrophic gastritis
  • Chronic bile reflux
  • Pernicious anemia
  • Stress

People with autoimmune gastrointestinal conditions like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and celiac disease have a higher risk of developing gastritis.

What symptoms does gastritis cause?

Gastritis symptoms vary between patients but often include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Upper abdominal pain
  • Poor appetite
  • Feeling over full after meals
  • Vomiting blood
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Anemia

You might also have bloody or dark and tarry stools if your stomach is bleeding.

What complications can gastritis cause?

Chronic gastritis can damage the stomach lining, leading to peptic ulcer disease, polyps (small growths), tumors, and in a few cases, stomach cancer. Of these, peptic ulcer disease is the most common problem.

The lining of your stomach and small intestines protects you from the strong acids needed to digest food. However, an ulcer could develop if gastritis causes the lining to break down.

Ulcers are open sores. Peptic ulcers most commonly appear in the stomach (gastric ulcers) or small intestine (duodenal ulcers). In severe cases, ulcers can perforate, going right through the stomach or duodenum.

If your Richmond Gastroenterology Associates provider suspects you have gastritis, they may arrange to sedate you and perform an upper endoscopy (esophagogastroduodenoscopy or EGD). They can see the inflammation and any abnormalities like ulcers and take a tissue sample (biopsy) for the lab to analyze.

How is gastritis treated?

The Richmond Gastroenterology Associates team tailors your gastritis treatment to its cause and factors like your age and general health. Medications you might need for gastritis include: 

  • Antacids to neutralize stomach acid
  • Antibiotics for H. pylori infection
  • Proton pump inhibitors to reduce stomach acid
  • Histamine blockers to reduce stomach acid

You should also avoid aspirin and NSAIDs and cut out alcohol.

If you have peptic ulcer disease that isn’t responding to these treatments, or your ulcer has been bleeding a lot, the Richmond Gastroenterology Associates team can treat it during an upper endoscopy.

They might inject medicines, cauterize the ulcer (use heat to seal a bleeding vessel), or clamp it with a small clip to stop the bleeding.

To find the cause of your gastritis and get the treatment you need, call Richmond Gastroenterology Associates today or book an appointment online.