A stomach ulcer refers to an lesion in the inner lining of the stomach and the adjoining intestinal tract called the duodenum. The ulcer located in the stomach is known as a gastric ulcer, and that located in the duodenum is called a duodenal ulcer. Usually, both are grouped together and termed as stomach ulcer. In Ayurveda it is a disease of tri-doshic nature i.e. Vata, Pitta, Kapha. But aggravation of pitta is noted in all cases.
The systems of stomach ulcer are sharp and severe pain and discomfort in the upper part of the abdomen. Gastric ulcer pain usually occurs an hour after meals and rarely at night. Duodenal ulcer pain usually occurs between meals when the stomach is empty. The pain is relieved by food, especially milk. As the disease progresses, there is distension of the stomach due to excessive flatulence, mental tension, insomnia, and gradual weakening of the body. Blood may also be detected in the stool.
A stomach ulcer is the result of hyperacidity, which is caused by an increased in the hydrochloric acid in the stomach. This strong acid, secreted by the cells lining of the stomach, erodes the inner lining of the stomach. Dietetic indiscretion such as overeating, taking of heavy meals or highly spiced foods, coffee, alcohol and smoking are the main factors contributing to this condition. Other causes are the ingestion of certain drugs, food poisoning, certain infections, gout, emotional disturbances, stress, and nervous tension.