Vomiting in children has many causes, but the most common are minor illnesses like gastroenteritis or urinary tract infections. Sometimes even colds can cause vomiting in children. Other causes of vomiting include motion sickness and more serious illnesses like appendicitis or meningitis. Projectile vomiting is when young babies throw up the contents of their stomachs with a lot of force. This can be often due to overfeeding and is benign (AAP, 2019). This can sometimes be linked to a serious condition called pyloric stenosis. When children are sick they tend to vomit more than adults do. Children usually get over vomiting very quickly. It can be hard to tell if an infant is spitting up or vomiting because some infants reflux forcefully or in large amounts. The diagnostic studies required in this case are stool culture to diagnose or rule out infection. Imaging studies like X-ray and CT are indicated only if there is a serious suspicion of more serious condition (AAP, 2019). The most common cause of vomiting in older infants and children is infectious gastroenteritis (an infection of the stomach or intestines), usually caused by a virus. Vomiting caused by gastroenteritis usually begins suddenly and resolves quickly, often within 24 to 48
hours. Other signs of gastroenteritis can include nausea, diarrhea, fever, or abdominal pain (AAP, 2019). Like children, the most common cause of nausea and vomiting in adolescents is infectious gastroenteritis (Murphy, 2016). Vomiting usually resolves within 24 to 48 hours in an adolescent with gastroenteritis. Less common causes of vomiting in adolescents include appendicitis (inflammation of the appendix), induced vomiting (eg. as seen with bulimia), pregnancy, gastric ulcers (of the stomach), pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas), inflammatory bowel disease (eg. Crohn disease), and consumption of toxic substances (eg. overdose). In adolescents stool culture and imaging studies can be used as initial diagnostic studies (Wolfram, 2018). Reference American Academy of Family Physicians. Summary of recommendations for clinical preventive services. Retrieved from - 2005.Par.0001.File.tmp/June2016.pdf. American Academy of Pediatrics (2019). Recommendations for Pediatric Health Care. Retrieved from i-Human Patients by Kaplan (2019). “Samantha Graves V4 PC”. Retrieved from - human.com/assignments/21761/attempts
Murphy, M.S., (2016). Management of bloody diarrhoea in children in primary care. BMJ . 2016;336(7651):1010–1015. Retrieved from doi:10.1136/bmj.39542.440417. Patel, N., Kay, M., (2019). Bloody stools in children. Uptodate . Retrieved from Vega, M.R., Avva, U., (2019). Pediatric Dehydration Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2019 Jan-. Retrieved from: Wolfram, W., (2018). Pediatric Gastrointestinal Bleeding Clinical Presentation. Medscape. Retrieved from emedicine.medscape.com/article/1955984-clinical.
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- Gastroenterology, Ulcerative colitis, Vomiting, Crohn's disease