Peptic Ulcer Disease in Nigeria
Peptic ulcer disease is due to the circumscribed, complete loss of gut epithelium in parts of the digestive tract exposed to hydrochloric acid and pepsin secretion. It can be acute or chronic and occurs as a result of an imbalance between the defensive and aggressive forces at play in the mucosal lining of the stomach, combined with superimposed environmental or immunological injury. NSAIDs contribute to peptic ulcer formation by undermining a vital part of the mucosal defensive forces. The greatest impact of the understanding of the role of H. pylori in PUD has been the ability to obtain a cure and prevent recurrence of what was once a recurrent disease. The true prevalence rate of PUD in the Nigerian populace is not certain although over three decades ago Nigeria was listed as an area of high PUD prevalence8 with perforation being the most frequent indication for surgery. More recent studies begin to show similar prevalence rates for DU and GU in both southern and northern Nigeria12-14 and this is attributed to improved diagnostic facilities12.
IFEMED Journal Vol. 14 (1) 2008: pp. 62-66