Diarrhea is loose, watery and more-frequent bowel movements which is a common problem. It may be present alone or be associated with other symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain or weight loss.it is a short time disease that last not more than few days. It becomes severe when it lasts more than a few days into weeks.
Causes of diarrhea
The cause of diarrhea is generally unknown. The most common cause of diarrhea is a virus that infects the bowel. The infection usually lasts for days, and it is referring to as intestinal flu.
Other possible causes of diarrhea can include:
- Infection by bacteria.
- Infections by other organisms
- Eating foods that upset the digestive system.
- Lactose intolerance
- Radiation therapy.
- Malabsorption of food (poor absorption).
Symptoms of diarrhea
Signs and symptoms associated with diarrhea include:
- Watery and loose stool
- Abdominal cramps or pain
- Blood in the stool
- Mucus in the stool
Diagnosis of diarrhea
Following investigation is conducted to rule out diarrhea:
- Medical history: Review the medications, conducting physical exam and may order tests to determine what’s causing the diarrhea.
- Blood test.A complete blood count test, measurement of electrolytes and kidney function tests can help indicate the severity of the diarrhea.
- Stool test. Stool test to see if a bacterium or parasite is causing the diarrhea.
- Hydrogen breath test. This type of test can help the medical health provider to determine if lactose intolerance is causing the disorder.
Treatment of diarrhea
Antibiotics or Anti-parasitic: The medication might help to treat diarrhea caused by bacteria or parasites.
Fluid replacement: Replace the fluids and salts which means drinking water with electrolytes, juice. IV fluid will prescribe based of the severity and if drinking irritates the stomach.
Complication of diarrhea
Diarrhea can lead to dehydration, which can be life-threatening if not treated. It is particularly dangerous in children, older adults and those with weakened immune systems.
Prevention of diarrhea
- Good personal hygiene: Washing of hands with soap and water after using the bathroom, as well as cooking, handling, and eating, is an important way to prevent diarrhea.
- Vaccination: Rotavirus is one of the causes of diarrhea, can be prevented with the rotavirus vaccine. It is administered to infants in several stages during the first year of life.
- Storing food properly: By keeping the food stored at the right temperatures, not eating things that have gone bad, cooking food to the recommended temperature and handling all foods safely can prevent diarrhea.