Nausea and Vomiting

  • Medical Author:
    Benjamin Wedro, MD, FACEP, FAAEM

    Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

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Nausea and vomiting from medications and medical treatments

  • Side effects from medications: The side effect of many medications include stomach irritation and/or nausea and vomiting. Anti-cancer dugs used for chemotherapy commonly cause nausea and vomiting that is not easily relieved. Narcotic pain medications, anti-inflammatory medications, steroids, and antibiotics all have nausea and vomiting listed as common side effects.
  • Radiation therapy: Nausea and vomiting can be associated with radiation therapy.

Nausea and vomiting and bowel obstruction

Abdominal pain and distention, nausea and vomiting, and inability to pass flatus (gas) or have a bowel movement are symptoms of bowel obstruction. Due to a variety of potential reasons, the small intestine becomes blocked and doesn't allow contents to pass through to the colon. This acts like a dam where food, fluid, and secretions back up, causing the symptoms of an obstruction. Common causes of bowel obstruction include previous surgery with the formation of adhesions, hernias, abnormal twisting of the GI tract (volvulus), tumors, and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Nausea and vomiting in pregnancy (morning sickness)

Vomiting in pregnancy is especially common in the first trimester due to hormone level changes in the bloodstream.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/22/2016
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