The stomach secretes hydrochloric acid and pepsinogen which is converted to the proteolytic enzyme pepsin in the presence of acid: the gastric epithelium is probably protected from them by its other important secretion, mucus. Though the causes of peptic ulcer are unknown it is believed that one or more of these secretions may be involved, and thus their control is the usual aim of therapy. We have previously discussed antacids1 and carbenoxolone (Biogastrone - Berk)2 which hastens the healing of gastric ulcers. What is the evidence that drugs thought to affect the activity of pepsin or the integrity of gastric mucus are beneficial?
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