What Is a Gastric Antral Ulcer?

A gastric ulcer is a sub variety of peptic ulcers which damages the inside layer of the stomach, according to Mayo Clinic. The National Cancer Institute describes the antrum as the lowest portion of the stomach, and ulcers in this region on the inside lining of the stomach are defined as gastric antral ulcers.

Gastric ulcers are open and often chronic sores that develop on the stomach lining, states Mayo Clinic. Like other varieties of peptic ulcers, gastric ulcers are primarily caused by an infection from bacterium Helicobacter pylori. The stomach is filled with acid that aids in digestion, but the mucous layer of the stomach protects the inner lining from damage. H. pylori live in this mucous layer and can cause inflammation, damaging the protection against the stomach's own acid and causing an open sore. Certain medications can also inflame the stomach lining and cause ulcers in the same manner.

A gastric antral ulcer causes the same symptoms as other gastric ulcers, including pain, nausea, and bloody vomit or stool, notes Mayo Clinic. Without treatment, gastric ulcers can have serious and possibly fatal complications. Internal bleeding can increase gradually, causing anemia and hemorrhage. Infections can occur, and complications due to scar tissue also sometimes develop.