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The term gastritis refers to inflammation of the stomach lining, a condition that has many potential causes.
Gastritis may be acute or chronic. If the onset is severe and sudden, it is called acute gastritis and if it lasts for a long time, it is called chronic gastritis. If left untreated, chronic gastritis may last for years. Erosive gastritis includes inflammation as well as erosion or ulceration of the stomach lining. Bleeding may also occur.
Acute gastritis may be caused by toxins, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and excessive alcohol consumption. Other causes of acute gastritis include major surgery, trauma, burns or severe infection. Acute gastritis may also occur as a result of bariatric (weight loss) procedures that involve banding or reconstructing the digestive tract.
Long term or chronic gastritis can be caused by infections with bacteria such as Helicobacter pylori. Certain diseases can also predispose to gastritis and these include chronic bile reflux, pernicious anemia and autoimmune disorders. Excessive stress can also cause gastritis.
Some of the common symptoms of gastritis include:
Some examples of the steps taken to diagnose gastritis are described below: