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Gastrointestinal problems, vomiting, diarrhoea, pain, fever

Symptoms of Gastrointestinal problems, vomiting, diarrhoea, pain and fever could be due to:


Symptoms and indications: A burning, gnawing pain below the ribs. It may wake the sufferer in the early hours. There is usually pain one to two hours after meals, which continues until the next meal and is only relieved by milk, antacids (medicines that reduce the acidity of the stomach) and food.

Treatment: Stopping smoking, antacids, barium meal. possibly surgery.

Persons most commonly affected: Adults and both sexes, but especially those of blood group O, or those with a family history of duodenal ulcers.


Symptoms and indications: In general, food poisoning results in nausea and vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain and possibly headache and fever. The symptoms and the time of onset vary with the type of food poisoning, but will usually commence between one and twenty four hours of intake.

Staphylococcal food poisoning from meat, milk or egg products generates symptoms abruptly within 2-8 hours and the attack is usually short-lived (3-6 hours) with complete recovery. Only susceptible individuals (young, chronically ill or the elderly) are likely to be at risk. Clostridium perfringens is associated with food poisoning from meat and meals that are reheated, and symptoms are produced within 8-24 hours.

Numerous species of Salmonella cause food poisoning with symptoms following 8 hours to 3 days after ingestion. Such infections are found in the meat and/or milk of domesticated cows, pigs and poultry and also in uncooked or lightly cooked hen's eggs.

Treatment: In the main, treatment is more preventative than curative, i.e. affected foods should be avoided and preparation and storage of foods should comply with good practice and appropriate regulations. Depending upon the severity of the attack, treatment may just involve bed rest or, if there is severe vomiting, intravenous infusions of electrolytes may be required. Thereafter, the diet should be bland until recovery is assured.

Persons most commonly affected: Both sexes and all ages.


Symptoms and indications: Symptoms include vomiting, nausea, diarrhoea, abdominal pains, discomfort and tenderness, wind and loss of appetite. There may be feverishness and the person may feel unwell and generally lethargic. Rarely, there may be vomiting of blood or blood in the stools, which are then black in colour. There may be dehydration due to diarrhoea, which can be serious, especially in children. A person with symptoms of gastritis should seek medical advice.

Treatment: Depends upon the cause and if it is drugs, alcohol or other irritant substance, then these need to be withdrawn and avoided. Plenty of fluids should be drunk and food avoided on the first day that gastritis begins. The person should carefully and gradually resume a normal diet, avoiding foods that may irritate, and alcohol. Recovery is normally complete within about one week.

Persons most commonly affected: All age groups and both sexes.


Stomach Ulcer (gastric and Peptic Ulcer)

Symptoms and indications: Symptoms may be quite vague or more definite and vary in their severity. They include pain felt either at the front or in the back, which may be more severe before a meal. Also, there may be nausea and a feeling of bloatedness after meals. Sometimes, instead of pain there is discomfort felt as a feeling of emptiness or hunger or of an aching nature. A person with symptoms of gastric unlcer should seek medical advice.

Treatment: Diagnostic techniques include endoscopy, analysis of gastric secretions and X-ray studies using barium. Treatment is by means of a number of different drugs including antacids, carbenoxolone and histamine and others. Most gastric ulcers respond fairly well to treatment, although there is a tendency for healing and relapse to occur. A person should eat a light diet and irritant foods or drinks should be avoided. These include spicy foods containing pepper, fatty foods, coffee and alcohol. The person should avoid smoking and stress.

Persons most commonly affected: Adults of both sexes in middle or older age, especially men.

Other problems that could cause Symptoms of Gastrointestinal problems, vomiting, diarrhoea, pain and fever could be: Ancyclotomiasis, Addison's disease, Cholera, Cirrhosis of the liver, Coeliac disease, Diverticular disease, Fascioliasis, Gastroenteritis, Giardiasis, Irritable bowel syndrome, Lassa fever, Ovarian tumour, Polyarteritis nodosa, Radiation sickness, Roundworms, Sprue, Tapeworms and others.





Our service is only to provide guidance and is not designed to replace your doctor. Please seek medical advice from your own doctor if you have any doubts about your illness.


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