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Two Ulcers Do Not Keep Derrick Rose From Playing Basketball

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If you've ever had a really, really bad stomach ulcer, then you may have an idea of what Derrick Rose was dealing with last night when he played despite two serious ulcers. I grimaced with him as he threw each shot, my own ulcer starting to act up in sympathy to Rose's.

The fact that Rose has two ulcers and has lost about seven pounds but still played tells you something about the character of the player. Would Jay Cutler have played if he was in such great pain? It's doubtful.

Ulcers are no laughing matter. There are two reasons people typically get ulcers. One is caused by bacteria that causes an infection that can be cured, the other is medication induced. Both eat away the lining of the stomach. In fact, some research shows that:

Peptic ulcers were formerly thought to be caused by stress, coffee consumption, or spicy foods. Now it is clear that about 60% of peptic ulcers are caused by a bacterial infection that can usually be cured. Another 20% are caused by nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin and ibuprofen (Advil, Nuprin, etc.), and another 20% have miscellaneous causes such as cigarettes or no clear cause.

My own ulcer, caused by medications, will never go away. I still find myself, while on medications, often eating less and drinking more liquids to coat my stomach and try to abate some of the pain. At its worst, I couldn't see myself going out on the basketball court and playing a full game like Rose did last night.

I do have some suggestions for Rose on how to treat his ulcers:

First of all, don't drink milk when the ulcers flare up. It's an old wives' tale that milk coats the stomach. There is something in the milk that irritate the stomach.

Don't drink tap water. I found, after an exhaustive search, that tap water is one of the worst things I can drink, even when my ulcer isn't acting up. The chlorine residual in tap water required by law in city drinking water systems is enough to make MY ulcer rear its ugly head.

Don't be afraid to eat spicy foods. Even when my ulcer is at its worst, I eat my Thai food, Thai spicy. That does not bother my stomach. There's something about the juices that are created when you eat spicy foods that actually help protect the stomach.

When your ulcer is acting up, eat smaller portions of food more often during the day. This keeps your stomach coated and may well help you from losing too much more wight and will keep you hydrated.

Of course, I'm not a doctor, but I've learned all of these things the hard way, and I'm always happy to pass along any info I have received that could help others.