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    How can severe vomiting be treated?

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Posted on Mon, 10 Jul 2017 in Pregnancy
Question: I have been vomiting for four days and can't hold anything down. I thought I might be pregnant but I think I'm starting my period. I've lost 15 pounds in a week and a half and I'm very concerned. What do you think it is?
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Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 34 minutes later
Brief Answer:
hold off solids, fluid replacement, medications

Detailed Answer:
HI, thanks for using healthcare magic

The most common reason for acute/recent onset vomiting is an infection either viral or bacterial of the gastrointestinal tract, though there are other causes as well

With chronic/persistent vomiting, other causes would need to be considered

Acute vomiting- as mentioned above infection is the most common reason. There may be associated abdominal pain, diarrhea or fever. If you are having abdominal pain , and it is severe, then you should be seen to rule out more serious infections such as appendicitis or a blockage of the GI tract or gallstones etc

If this is not the case then treatment: (1) hold off all solid food till there is a 4 hour window with no vomiting, then restart with small amounts dry plain foods such as biscuits, toast etc

(2)you need to drink, in some cases, the build up of acid in the body from the repeated vomiting and reduced intake can itself provoke vomiting.

You need to replace the fluids and electrolytes that you are losing with oral rehydration packets or dilute sport drinks such as gatorade or poweraid

Only SIPS should be taken for the first hour. If you use more, you would vomit.
For the first hour, 1 tsp to 1 tbs every 5 mins, if this is tolerated, the amount can be increased slightly in the next hour

(3)medications such as pepto bismol or dramamine would help with the vomiting, dramamine may make you sleepy

It is important to remember that if there is no improvement or there is abdominal or you are still concerned, you should see your doctor for an assessment where your abdomen can be examined.
Examination is a very important part of diagnosis

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Michelle Gibson James

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 16811 Questions

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