Gastroenteritis - Cause

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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?)

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What are the most common causes of gastroenteritis?

The most prevalent cause of gastroenteritis in the U.S. and the world is Norovirus. It causes about 50% to 70% of viral gastroenteritis while Rotavirus, Astrovirus, Adenovirus, and Sapovirus strains cause most of the other viral gastroenteritis infections. Norovirus was also listed as the leading cause of gastroenteritis in children under 5 years old according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Bacterial causes of gastroenteritis that occur worldwide are Salmonella, Shigella, Campylobacter Aeromonas, and Escherichia coli (E. coli) strains of bacteria. Other bacteria like Clostridium, Vibrio, Campylobacter, and Yersinia spp can cause outbreaks occasionally.

Parasites such as Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Entamoeba infections can cause gastroenteritis and occasionally, other parasites have outbreaks such as the Cyclospora outbreak that occurred in 2012 to 2013 in the U.S.

There are many other less frequent causes of gastroenteritis such as food allergies, antibiotics, and toxins. Gastroenteritis symptoms are frequently listed as possible side effects of many medicines.

Return to Gastroenteritis (Stomach Flu)

See what others are saying

Comment from: anonymous, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: August 22

I am a young university student. It is the summertime, and having time off work, I've been lounging around, admittedly rarely showering. I went to McDonalds, ate (with dirty hands), came home, and suddenly started feeling waves of what seemed like knives stabbing me. I actually was squirming on the floor for the rest of the day. Really bad diarrhea has been present for a few days now along with a cough and fever. I actually started freaking out I may have HIV (will check to make sure though). Nasty bug! Wash your hands, friends.

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Comment from: Ryan, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: October 05

I recently ate at McDonald's and got immediately sick with gastroenteritis while having my morning coffee. After days of nausea which I currently still have on day 4, I spoke to a server at McDonald's and she stated that everyone working at that McDonald's in my city was intensely sick and that it won't go away because they keep passing it back and forth to each other as they work, then to customers as they handle money and touch surfaces such as the countertop, while ordering especially. It is not a clean place even though they seem to have a full time cleaner. They barely do anything, the bathrooms a mess, etc. My advice is to stay at home; do not eat out, drink bottled water, and do not visit McDonald's anywhere in the world, it may be transmitted in the food at McDonald's by the sounds of it and that's why its spreading so much; if you aren't sick yet of course!

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