Gastrointestinal Diseases

by Sam Malone


Since the digestive system is made up of many different organs, there are many complex diseases that may affect the system. The gastrointestinal system is vital as it metabolizes the food to produce energy. Till recently, the origins of many of these gastrointestinal diseases were not known. However, with continuous research on these diseases, there is enough scientific data on them for doctors to be able to treat many of them. Here are some of the common gastrointestinal problems

1. Ulcers

It is popularly believed that ulcers are caused due to spicy food and stress. However, the truth is that these ulcers are caused due to bacteria known as helicobacter pylori. These ulcers may also be caused as side effects of certain pain killers and medications like aspirin. Some of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are also responsible for ulcers in the stomach. These ulcers may sometimes bleed causing the appearance of blood in stool. A person with ulcers in the stomach is not able to eat spicy food because it causes pain in the stomach.

2. Heartburn

Heartburn is a common problem that is experienced typically after over eating. Sometimes, when the gastric juices are breaking down food in the stomach, they may be regurgitated into the throat and the mouth through the esophagus. When there is regurgitation of gastric juices in the throat and the mouth, it causes a burning sensation in the chest, which is accompanied by an acidic taste in the mouth.

3. Celiac Disease

This is a disease that although not very common, has a worrying rate of incidence. This is a disease that can damage the small intestines permanently. When the small intestines are thus damaged, they are not able to absorb nutrients. Those who suffer from this disease are not able to tolerate gluten, a protein found mainly in cereals. The symptoms of this disease are mainly diarrhea, vomiting, and abnormalities in growth, which are usually manifested as stunted growth. In extreme cases, the disease may even prove to be fatal.

4. Constipation

Constipation usually occurs when the body is not naturally able to expel stools. The stool passed during constipation is usually hard and dry. The person has to exert a lot of effort in order to pass the stool. This is a temporary problem which can be corrected with a good diet and adequate physical exercise.

5. Irritable Bowel Syndrome

This is a disease in which the muscles of the intestines do not work normally. The motility of the intestines reduces in this disorder. There is a build up of gas, abdominal discomfort, constipation or diarrhea. Some other symptoms are nausea and vomiting. Irritable bowel syndrome is a disorder which may lead to many more serious conditions like cancer.


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