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Diarrhea; fluid or looser stools than normal.


Overview:
Diarrhea is passing fluid or looser stools than is normal for you. This disease affects most people from time to time and isn’t sever at all.
However, it can be distressing and unpleasant until it passes, which may be takes a few days to a week.
In another article, we have been talked about Constipation.
Causes:
The main reasons for diarrhea , when body cannot absorb fluid from the contents present in bowel, or when extra fluid is secreted into bowel, causing watery stool.
The common cause in both adults and children occurs due to a bowel infection (gastroenteritis).
These infections usually occurs during travel abroad, particularly to areas with poor standards of public hygiene. This  infection is called travelers’ diarrhea.
Other causes of diarrhea
- Anxiety also may cause diarrhea.
- Can also be the result of  a food allergy.
- Taking some medication.

Types of diarrhea
1- Short-term diarrhea: Diarrhea which occurs in short period.
- May be symptom of bowel infection (gastroenteritis).
- Feelings of anxiety.
- Drinking too much alcohol.
- Food allergy.
- Radiotherapy can cause Damage to the lining of the intestines.
2- Long-term diarrhea: Diarrhea which occurs in long period.
- May be symptom of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
- Inflammatory bowel disease: inflammation if the gut, may be result Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.
- Coeliac disease: If the patient has a digestive problem due to an adverse reaction to gluten.
- Bile acid malabsorption: liver produces bile acid which builds up in the digestive system.
- Chronic pancreatitis: inflammation of the pancreas.
- Diverticular disease: where small bulges develop in the lining of the intestine.
- bowel cancer: this condition can cause bloody diarrhea in your stools.
- Persistent diarrhea: diarrhea occurs after surgery on the stomach, such as: Gastrectomy: an operation to remove part of the stomach in the case of treatment of  stomach cancer.

Symptoms:
Diarrhea Associated symptoms can include:
- Stomach cramps.
- Loss of appetite.
As mentioned before , diarrhea leads to excessive loss of water in your stool, which can also sometimes lead to dehydration, which can be serious condition if it's not recognized and treated quickly.
Signs of dehydration: these signs differ from children to adults.
In children can include:
- Pale or mottled skin.
- Irritability or drowsiness.
- Cold hands and feet.
- Passing urine infrequently.
- They look or feel increasingly unwell.
Signs of dehydration in adults can include:
- Nausea.
- Tiredness and a lack of energy.
- Loss of appetite.
- Dry tongue.
- Feeling lightheaded.
- Rapid heartbeat.
- Dizziness.
- Sunken eyes.
- Muscle cramps.

Diagnosis:
1- We can diagnose the patient through knowing the cause of condition which led to diarrhea.
2- From examination of stool sample.
3- From blood tests.
4- Rectal examination.

Treatment:
- Diarrhea will usually clear up without treatment after period of time, may take few days, particularly if it's caused by an infection.
In children, diarrhea may take 5 to 7 days and will rarely last longer than 2 weeks to clear up.
In adults, diarrhea usually lasts for 2 to 4 days, but some infections can last a week or more.
-  Doctor may advise you to take an oral rehydration solution (ORS) to prevent dehydration if you're at risk .
- Antidiarrhoeal medicines are used to reduce diarrhea and slightly shorten how long it lasts.
- Loperamide is the main antidiarrhoeal medicine used now, as it has side effects and very effective. Another type of antidiarrhoeal medicine called racecadotril, which works by reducing the amount of water produced by the small intestine. Racecadotril may be as effective as loperamide for treating diarrhea.
Attention!! You shouldn’t  take antidiarrhoeal medicines if you suffer from blood or mucus in your stools or you have a high temperature (fever). 
- Most antidiarrhoeal medicines shouldn’t be given to children for example: Racecadotril can be used in children up to 3 months old if it's combined with oral rehydration and the other measures mentioned above, although not all doctors recommend it.
- Painkillers: as paracetamol or ibuprofen  will not treat diarrhea, but  can help relieve a fever and a headache.
- Antibiotics : If the cause is unknown , treatment with antibiotics is not recommended. Antibiotics may be recommended in the case of severe diarrhea and a bacterial infection is responsible for diarrhea. They may also be used if you have health problem, or weakened immune system.
- Hospital treatment: in the case of the patient is seriously dehydrated, hospital treatment may be needed.
Diarrhea; fluid or looser stools than normal. Reviewed by Tpdsm on October 02, 2017 Rating: 5

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