Gastric Ulceration - all species

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Erosive and Ulcerative Gastritis

  • Causes gastric ulcers
  • Seen
    • Commonly in the dog and pig.
    • In young calves weaned onto a coarse diet.
    • These usually heal as animal gets older.
    • In the horse, associated with parasites.
  • Once started, gastric ulcers can erode deeply.
    • May penetrate gastric wall leading to peritonitis.
    • May erode a blood vessel to cause haemorrhage.



Gastic ulcer- gross (Courtesy of BioMed Image Archive)
  • Round or oval lesions from 1-4 cm in diameter.
  • Sharply “punched out” lesions with perpendicular or slightly overhanging walls.
  • Borders are level with, or slightly raised above, the surrounding mucosa.
  • Depth is variable.
    • Some penetrate the superficial mucosa only.
    • Some deeply penetrate the muscularis externa.
  • Base may be markedly haemorrhagic.
    • In advanced chronic cases, scarring may result in a puckered appearance.


Gastric ulcer- histological (Courtesy of BioMed Image Archive)
  • Appearance varies with the degree aggressiveness of the ulcer and the amount of healing which has occurred.
    • Rapidly excavating ulcers have minimal granulation tissue and collagen deposition.
    • Others may have a necrotic base with a framework of granulation tissue and collagen.
  • The blood vessels at the base of the ulcer may be thickened and thrombosed.
  • In the bovine, the ulcer may have a superimposed fungal infection.


  • There are differences in pathogenesis between species.