Patient Comments: Gastroenteritis - Experience

Please describe your experience with gastroenteritis (stomach flu).

Comment from: Scientia, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

I thought I had overeaten or had food poisoning at first when my stomach was upset was getting worse by the hour. Then I started vomiting, which I don't think I've done in almost a decade. Food poisoning is supposed to go away when you empty your stomach of everything, but the nausea and pain continued for several hours after. I had a couple minor instances of diarrhea, but for the most part I couldn't pass anything from that end. In addition I had the worst chills I've ever had, and was so exhausted and in pain I could barely stand, but I couldn't sleep either. What made me finally decide to go to the hospital (even though I had the gastroenteritis symptoms for less than 12 hours) was when I couldn't even hold down water. Food wasn't even an option, but all I was doing was drinking water and after 15 minutes or so I would be throwing up again; and my vomit was almost entirely water. Waiting it out didn't feel like an option seeing as I couldn't even stay hydrated. When I went to the hospital it actually took the nurses half a dozen tries to get the IV needle in my arm because my veins were so collapsed from dehydration. I was given painkillers and medication for nausea, and I was finally able to sleep for a few hours. They ran some tests and I was released after about 3 hours with prescriptions for anti-nausea medications. I went home and slept, and I'm on day 2 of this illness now.

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Comment from: Female (Patient) Published: November 30

I went to an adult birthday party on Friday night. I had a little fresh guacamole with onion, cilantro and a spoonful of salsa, no alcohol, chips, cake, etc. My stomach began hurting at the party and I thought it was the strong tasting onions. I threw up every bit of the guacamole when I got home. I started getting very painful sharp stomach cramps. I had trouble keeping any liquids down. The next day I took my temperature and it was 103.3, and by Saturday night it was 103.9. For the next 5 days my temperature stayed between 103 and 103.9. I alternately shivered uncontrollably and sweated so bad may bedding and clothes were soaked. I began sleeping naked with towels under me and extra sheets so I didn't have to remake the bed. I still had to switch between 2 beds to let one dry out. I never had any diarrhea, just normal bowel movements. I got quite dizzy when I stood up, which was not often. I ate a little steel-cut oats with milk and a cup of warm milk for breakfast the 3rd day and a couple of poached eggs for dinner. That's what I had every day for about a week. My sense of smell became very sensitive. Any chemical sort of smell made me nauseous. I took Advil, about 6 each day, and Excedrin once a day for a headache. I began taking probiotics and digestive enzymes which seemed to make the cramps less intense. Throughout the illness I drank a lot of water and herbal teas (echinaceae and ginger). On day 6 my fever was 102 and day seven it was normal. My stomach continued to ache for another 2 weeks and I continued the probiotics and enzymes. I began eating meat and salads and vegetable juice (self-made). I never have stomach/gastrointestinal trouble and am amazingly regular. I only have one chronic health problem; I am hypothyroid and take Westhroid for that. I had no flu or cold symptoms. It has been 2 weeks now and I'm still exhausted. No energy at all. Not sick, but extremely tired all day. No one at the party got any kind of food poisoning so I have discounted food poisoning. I didn't go to the hospital because I just knew I'd get subjected to a bunch of radiation and then be given a bunch of drugs. Also I don't want to take a chance of getting some antibiotic resistant bug at the hospital. I think I did what I needed to do. Rest, probiotics, digestive enzymes, soaking in sea salt baths, oil pulling with coconut oil, lots of hydration with herbal teas. Very light meals. I also drank some Kombucha every day for the probiotics. I lost about 6 pounds. This is the sickest I've been in decades and I have no idea where this bug came from. I am being a lot more careful about washing my hands now as I probably got it from a door handle or shopping cart. I eat 99 percent of my meals at home because I don't like taking chances with restaurant food. I hope my energy picks up in another week.

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Comment from: verysick, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: August 24

I had nausea, stomach pain, leg weakness, on day one of gastroenteritis. I decided to go to the emergency room. I was admitted, and had CAT scans, blood tests, the whole 9 yards of medical tests. I was admitted to surgical ward the surgeon came in next day and said it's probably a virus; end of discussion. I was kept another day in hospital for food to see how I was tolerating some semisolids and then sent home. I came home, feel the same as I went in; no improvement, and I still don't know what is going on!

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Comment from: tfledder, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: March 13

I had the annual flu shot in fall 2014, but my experience with the flu started at 8 pm this past Sunday night with horrible diarrhea like never before and lasted until 5 am. Every 3 minutes I was on the pot. No fever, cramps (small gurgling only), or respiratory stuff ever! In the morning I tried some soda crackers with cream cheese and was a little better. I made it through 7 hours at work but had to make 5 very hasty trips to the bathroom so as not to mess myself. I'm still a bit weak but that's a regular thing for the last 10 years. I am not sure why. I lost 9 to 10 lb. over this stomach flu!

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Gastroenteritis - Symptoms Question: What symptoms did you have with gastroenteritis (stomach flu)?
Gastroenteritis - Cause Question: Do you know what virus, bacteria, or parasite caused your case of gastroenteritis (cruise ship, traveling by plane, traveling to another country, from a family member or friend?)
Gastroenteritis - Treatment Question: What treatments were effective for your case of gastroenteritis?
Gastroenteritis - Call for Medical Help Question: Did you have to call your doctor to treat your case of gastroenteritis?
Gastroenteritis - Complications Question: Please describe the complications you suffered due to gastroenteritis.
Gastroenteritis - Diagnosed Question: How was your case of gastroenteritis diagnosed?

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