See a Doctor About Diarrhea in Orlando, FL

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Understand Orlando Adult and Child Diarrhea

Diarrhea is loose, watery stools.

Acute diarrhea is a common problem that usually lasts one or two days and goes away on its own without special treatment. Prolonged diarrhea persisting for more than two days may be a sign of a more serious problem and poses the risk of dehydration. Chronic diarrhea may be a feature of chronic disease. At Orlando Gastroenterology, we will treat your diarrhea and help you return to health.

What causes diarrhea?

Acute diarrhea is usually related to a bacterial, viral, or parasitic infection. Chronic diarrhea is usually related to functional disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome or inflammatory bowel disease.A few of the more common causes of diarrhea include the following:
  • Bacterial and viral infections
  • Food intolerances
  • Parasites
  • Reaction to medicines
  • Intestinal diseases
  • Functional bowel disorders
  • Eating food or drinking water contaminated with bacteria, viruses, or parasites

What are the symptoms of diarrhea?

Diarrhea may be accompanied by cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, or an urgent need to use the bathroom. Depending on the cause, a person may have a fever or bloody stools.

Diarrhea in children

Children can have acute and chronic forms of diarrhea. If your child has diarrhea, do not hesitate to call the doctor for advice. Diarrhea is especially dangerous in newborns and infants, leading to dehydration in just a day or two.

Take your child to the doctor if there is no improvement after 24 hours or if any of the following symptoms appear:

  • stools containing blood or pus
  • black stools
  • a temperature above 102 degrees
  • signs of dehydration

Medications to treat diarrhea in adults can be dangerous for children and should only be given with a doctor’s guidance.

Dehydration

Diarrhea can cause dehydration, which means the body has lost too much fluid and too many electrolytes and can’t function properly. Dehydration is particularly dangerous in children and older adults and must be treated promptly to avoid serious health problems.

Signs of dehydration include:

  • thirst
  • less frequent urination
  • dry skin
  • fatigue
  • light-headedness
  • dark-colored urine

Signs of dehydration in children include:

  • dry mouth and tongue
  • no tears when crying
  • no wet diapers for 3 hours or more
  • sunken abdomen, eyes, or cheeks
  • high fever
  • listlessness or irritability
  • skin that does not flatten when pinched and released

If you suspect that you or your child is dehydrated, call the doctor immediately. Severe dehydration may require hospitalization.

Preventing Dehydration

The fluid and electrolytes lost during diarrhea need to be replaced promptly because the body cannot function without them. Electrolytes are the salts and minerals that affect the amount of water in your body, muscle activity, and other important functions.

Although water is extremely important in preventing dehydration, it does not contain electrolytes. Broth and soups that contain sodium, and fruit juices, soft fruits, or vegetables that contain potassium, help restore electrolyte levels. Over-the-counter rehydration solutions are also good electrolyte sources and are especially recommended for children.

When should a doctor be consulted about diarrhea?

Diarrhea is not usually harmful, but it can become dangerous or signal a more serious problem. You should see the doctor if you experience any of the following:

  • diarrhea for more than two days
  • severe pain in the abdomen or rectum
  • a fever of 102 degrees or higher
  • blood in your stool or black, tarry stools
  • signs of dehydration (see above)
  • you’ve recently returned from a foreign country

How is the cause of diarrhea diagnosed?

Diagnostic tests to find the cause of diarrhea may include a physical exam, stool culture, blood tests, fasting tests, sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy, and imaging tests.

How is diarrhea treated?

In most cases of diarrhea, replacing lost fluid to prevent dehydration is the only treatment necessary.

Medicines that stop diarrhea may be helpful, but they are not recommended for people whose diarrhea is caused by a bacterial infection or parasite. Instead, doctors usually prescribe antibiotics as a first-line treatment.

Viral infections are either treated with medication or left to run their course, depending on the severity and type of virus.

The above information comes from The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. To ensure that you’re viewing the most up-to-date information, we recommend visiting the diarrhea entry at the NIDDK website.

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Understand Orlando Adult and Child Diarrhea

Diarrhea is loose, watery stools.

Acute diarrhea is a common problem that usually lasts one or two days and goes away on its own without special treatment. Prolonged diarrhea persisting for more than two days may be a sign of a more serious problem and poses the risk of dehydration. Chronic diarrhea may be a feature of chronic disease. At Orlando Gastroenterology, we will treat your diarrhea and help you return to health.

What causes diarrhea?

Acute diarrhea is usually related to a bacterial, viral, or parasitic infection. Chronic diarrhea is usually related to functional disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome or inflammatory bowel disease.A few of the more common causes of diarrhea include the following:
  • Bacterial and viral infections
  • Food intolerances
  • Parasites
  • Reaction to medicines
  • Intestinal diseases
  • Functional bowel disorders
  • Eating food or drinking water contaminated with bacteria, viruses, or parasites

What are the symptoms of diarrhea?

Diarrhea may be accompanied by cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, or an urgent need to use the bathroom. Depending on the cause, a person may have a fever or bloody stools.

Diarrhea in children

Children can have acute and chronic forms of diarrhea. If your child has diarrhea, do not hesitate to call the doctor for advice. Diarrhea is especially dangerous in newborns and infants, leading to dehydration in just a day or two.

Take your child to the doctor if there is no improvement after 24 hours or if any of the following symptoms appear:

  • stools containing blood or pus
  • black stools
  • a temperature above 102 degrees
  • signs of dehydration

Medications to treat diarrhea in adults can be dangerous for children and should only be given with a doctor’s guidance.

Dehydration

Diarrhea can cause dehydration, which means the body has lost too much fluid and too many electrolytes and can’t function properly. Dehydration is particularly dangerous in children and older adults and must be treated promptly to avoid serious health problems.

Signs of dehydration include:

  • thirst
  • less frequent urination
  • dry skin
  • fatigue
  • light-headedness
  • dark-colored urine

Signs of dehydration in children include:

  • dry mouth and tongue
  • no tears when crying
  • no wet diapers for 3 hours or more
  • sunken abdomen, eyes, or cheeks
  • high fever
  • listlessness or irritability
  • skin that does not flatten when pinched and released

If you suspect that you or your child is dehydrated, call the doctor immediately. Severe dehydration may require hospitalization.

Preventing Dehydration

The fluid and electrolytes lost during diarrhea need to be replaced promptly because the body cannot function without them. Electrolytes are the salts and minerals that affect the amount of water in your body, muscle activity, and other important functions.

Although water is extremely important in preventing dehydration, it does not contain electrolytes. Broth and soups that contain sodium, and fruit juices, soft fruits, or vegetables that contain potassium, help restore electrolyte levels. Over-the-counter rehydration solutions are also good electrolyte sources and are especially recommended for children.

When should a doctor be consulted about diarrhea?

Diarrhea is not usually harmful, but it can become dangerous or signal a more serious problem. You should see the doctor if you experience any of the following:

  • diarrhea for more than two days
  • severe pain in the abdomen or rectum
  • a fever of 102 degrees or higher
  • blood in your stool or black, tarry stools
  • signs of dehydration (see above)
  • you’ve recently returned from a foreign country

How is the cause of diarrhea diagnosed?

Diagnostic tests to find the cause of diarrhea may include a physical exam, stool culture, blood tests, fasting tests, sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy, and imaging tests.

How is diarrhea treated?

In most cases of diarrhea, replacing lost fluid to prevent dehydration is the only treatment necessary.

Medicines that stop diarrhea may be helpful, but they are not recommended for people whose diarrhea is caused by a bacterial infection or parasite. Instead, doctors usually prescribe antibiotics as a first-line treatment.

Viral infections are either treated with medication or left to run their course, depending on the severity and type of virus.

The above information comes from The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. To ensure that you’re viewing the most up-to-date information, we recommend visiting the diarrhea entry at the NIDDK website.

Make an Appointment

Name

Date of Birth:

Phone Number

Requested Date of Appointment

Time Requested

Additional Information