Which physical findings suggest chronic gastritis?

Updated: Jun 07, 2019
  • Author: Akiva J Marcus, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
  • Print
Answer

The physical examination contributes relatively little to the assessment and management of chronic gastritis. However, some findings are specifically associated with the particular complications of H pylori–associated gastritis and autoimmune gastritis.

In uncomplicated H pylori–associated atrophic gastritis, clinical findings are few and nonspecific. Epigastric tenderness may exist. If gastric ulcers coexist, guaiac-positive stool may result from occult blood loss. Bad breath (ie, halitosis) and abdominal pain or discomfort may occur, with bloating associated with bacterial overgrowth syndrome.

Physical findings may result from the development of pernicious anemia and neurologic complications in patients with autoimmune atrophic gastritis. With severe cobalamin deficiency, the patient is pale and has slightly icteric skin and eyes. The pulse is rapid, and the heart may be enlarged. Auscultation usually reveals a systolic flow murmur.


Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!