The medical abbreviation "PUD" stands for peptic ulcer disease, according to MedlinePlus. Peptic ulcer disease is a condition in which an open sore or raw area, called an ulcer, is present in the lining of the stomach or small intestine.
WebMD states that peptic ulcer disease has two main causes: infection with Helicobacter pylori bacteria and long-term use of non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen or naproxen. Patients with peptic ulcer disease commonly experience symptoms such as burning or aching between the navel and breastbone, loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea or bloating after eating, and belly pain that is relieved after taking an antacid or acid reducer. Symptoms may come and go and alternate with pain-free time periods, states WebMD. Less commonly, ulcers cause serious symptoms, such as vomiting after eating, vomiting blood or a substance that looks like coffee grounds, and black or bloody stools. Silent ulcers, which are more common in older adults and patients with diabetes, cause no symptoms.
Most ulcers are treated with lifestyle changes and medications that reduce the amount of acid in the stomach. According to WebMD, ulcers caused by Helicobacter pylori infection usually require antibiotics. Patients with peptic ulcer disease are advised to stop smoking, stop taking NSAIDs and avoid drinking alcohol.