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Do I have stomach ulcers?

Q: I am 25 years old suffering from frequent stomach aches, especially after meals and at times without eating food too. I can hear growling noises from my stomach and its very embarrassing. Before menstrual periods too I get pain and fever. My diet is adequate; I eat a lot of vegetables, fruits and drink a lot of water. But the pain is killing at times. Please advise.

A:It is important to exclude stomach ulcers, as gastric ulcers tend to produce pain after meals and therefore you need to have an endoscopy examination by a gastroenterologist who will also test for the bacteria called H. pylori, which are the group of organisms for causing stomach ulcers. If this is negative you need screening tests for small bowel and large bowel inflammatory or other conditions and your physician will screen your bowels with appropriate investigations for inflammatory or other conditions. If all tests come negative, the diagnosis is very likely to be irritable bowel syndrome where the bowels contract irregularly causing spasms. No doubt your specialist will advise you as needed.

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