Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Stomach Ulcers

Until relatively recently the medical community thought that stress was the cause of stomach ulcers. Even today, many people of the general population blame stress as the cause.

We now know that most stomach ulcers are caused by bacteria living in our stomachs called Helicobacter Pylori (H. Pylori). In 2005 two Australians, Barry Marshall and Robin Warren, were awarded the Nobel Prize for this discovery.

Somewhere about 40% of adults in the developed world have H. Pylori living in their stomachs and this figure is even higher in the developing world. Most of these people won't however develop stomach ulcers or show any symptoms of infection: only a minority of these people will develop stomach ulcers.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Salmonella is a type of bacteria that lives in animals, which we usually associate with uncooked chicken. Certain animals can host Salmonella without showing any signs of disease. For these Salmonella carrying animals, Salmonella is part of their normal flora of bacteria that lives within their intestines. An example of a human's normal flora is E. Coli, which lives in our colon and usually doesn't cause us any problems.

The problem for human's is that Salmonella is not part of our normal flora. So when we eat uncooked chicken or anything else containing the bacteria, we are also ingesting Salmonella. If we swallow enough Salmonella, it will multiply and cause an infection. This is one way we can get food poisoning.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

What is this blog for?

When I got accepted into medicine, many people told me how jealous they were because it would be so interesting. I've decided to start this blog to add one point that I found interesting during the day. Hopefully others find it interesting too.