Stress Ulcer Prophylaxis

  • Paul Ellis Marik


Stress ulcers are superficial erosions in the gastric mucosa that are common in patients with acute, life-threatening diseases. These lesions are usually shallow and well demarcated, primarily involving the superficial layers of the gastric epithelium. Infrequently, erosions may penetrate the muscularis mucosa, resulting in a lesion that resembles a true gastric ulcer. Endoscopic studies have shown that nearly all critically ill patients develop upper gastrointestinal erosions after critical illness or major surgery. Although gastric erosions are common in critically ill patients, they are usually clinically silent. In addition, the incidence of clinically important bleeding from stress ulceration has declined over the last two decades, probably due to earlier and more effective resuscitation.


Altered Mental Status Stress Ulcer Stress Ulcer Prophylaxis Aspiration Pneumonitis Important Bleeding 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York, Inc. 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul Ellis Marik
    • 1
  1. 1.Critical Care MedicineMercy Hospital of PittsburghPittsburghUSA

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