Gastroenteritis is known by the other name as ‘Stomach flu’. Gastroenteritis causes inflammation of stomach and intestine. It is basically said to be an infectious diseases which can be caused by an infected person or due to consumption of contaminated food or water. It is not a deadly disease for elders, but can prove fatal for infants. This stomach flu is usually associated with vomiting or diarrhea but this is not influenza.
What causes Gastroenteritis?
The main cause of Gastroenteritis is said to be the viruses and bacteria. These bacteria and viruses are different in their type and also found in different agent or source. Thus the basic causes for Gastroenteritis are given below along with the specific name of the virus and bacteria : –
Viruses : In this it has norovirus, calicivirus, rotavirus, astrovirus and adenovirus virus.
Bacteria : Campylobacter bacterium bacteria.
Parasites : Entamoeba histolytica, Cryptosporidium and Giardia lamblia.
Bacterial toxins : staphylococcal bacteria.
Along with these viruses and bacteria, some chemical and medication can also cause gastroenteritis. What are the Viruses (Norovirus, Rotavirus, Adenoviruses, Parvoviruses, and Astroviruses)?
Now let’s have look over the viruses:
Norovirus : It is a diverse single-stranded RNA, which is also called as Norwalk virus.It out spread through contaminated food or water. It can affect people of all age and is said be contagious diseases.
Rotavirus : Rotavirus is the main culprit in infants and children to suffer from Gastroenteritis. This virus causes severe diarrhea. It is a double-stranded RNA virus
Adenoviruses : Adenoviruses belongs to the family of Adenoviridae and it is a double stranded DNA genome. It causes to have mild respiratory infections and weakened immune system.
Parvoviruses : This belongs to Parvoviridae virus family and said by the other name as human bocavirus.
Astroviruses : Astrovirus is a plus-sense single-stranded RNA which comes under Astroviridae virus family. This is also found to cause gastroenteritis in young children.
What are Parasites and Protozoans (Giardia, Cryptosporidium)?
Now let’s have look over the Parasites and Protozoans:
Giardia : Giardia is said to cause water borne diarrhea. These bacteria are found in the contaminated animal feces, which eventually or mistakenly gone in the nearby lake or river.
Cryptosporidium : Cryptosporidium is found in the contaminated food and water. When it enters into the human body, it lives in intestine of your body. These parasites weaken immune systems.
What are the symptoms of Gastroenteritis?
The symptoms of gastroenteritis are quite similar to that of influenza. Some of the symptoms are:
•You feel like vomiting.
•You have abdominal cramps and pain.
•It may also lead you to have loss of appetite.
•You suffer from nausea and diarrhea.
Blood and pus in stool (very rarely).
How Gastroenteritis Diagnosed?
Depending upon the viruses and the bacteria, the types of gastroenteritis differ. Thus proper diagnosis is required to judge the proper cause of gastroenteritis. The basic diagnosis is the physical examination and to make sure doctor recommends blood and stool test.
What is the Treatment for Gastroenteritis?
Depending upon the gastroenteritis the treatment differs. The basic treatments include the following things:
•Drink water; try to drink Oral dehydration drinks.
First and foremost things, you have to follow your doctor’s advice anyhow, because it is very difficult to cure Gastroenteritis. So follow your treatment and complete your treatment.
How can Gastroenteritis be prevented?
Some of the preventive tips are:
•Keep your hand clean by washing your hand with soap.
•Try to eat good cooked food.
•Keep your toilet and bathroom clean.
•For infants, try to maintain their hygiene.
•Drink bottle water only, if you are on travel trip.
What Expert/ US Health Institute (Gastroenteritis) is saying about Gastroenteritis?
As there are no effective treatment, so prevention is always best. For infants the WHO (World Health Organization) has recommended rotavirus vaccine. The best thing to do is to avoid contaminated food and water and keep your hand clean. One thing keep in your mind, Gastroenteritis is self-limiting disease and you can prevent it from happening.
Jason Dees, DO, a family physician in New Albany, Miss., and a member of the board of director of the American Academy of Family Physicians says- “The big thing is avoiding dehydration with gastroenteritis”