What are acute nausea and vomiting?

Acute nausea and vomiting are common symptoms that may be caused many different disorders. Acute nausea and vomiting may occur in conditions affecting the digestive system itself or in association with more generalized conditions, such as influenza, migraine headaches or meningitis. Many causes of acute nausea and vomiting are not serious; however, these symptoms can also be a sign of severe underlying conditions.

Digestive Problems Spotlight

Common causes of nausea and vomiting include viral gastroenteritis and morning sickness that is associated with pregnancy. Many medications can cause acute nausea and vomiting, such as chemotherapy and general anesthetics used for surgery. Migraine headaches are also common causes for acute nausea and vomiting. Foodborne illnesses are a common cause for acute nausea and vomiting and often also result in diarrhea.

If your symptoms are persistent and severe, or you are unable to keep down any fluids or food, these may be signs of a serious condition. Rarely, nausea and vomiting may indicate a serious or even life-threatening problem such as a heart attack.

Left untreated, acute nausea and vomiting may lead to severe dehydration. Severe dehydration and electrolyte imbalances can result in shock or coma and may be life threatening. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have symptoms of severe dehydration such as confusion, lethargy, loss of consciousness, cold skin, or reduced urine production.

SYMPTOMS

What other symptoms might occur with acute nausea and vomiting?

Acute nausea and vomiting may accompany other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Symptoms that frequently affect your digestive tract may also involve other body systems.... Read more about acute nausea and vomitingsymptoms

CAUSES

What causes acute nausea and vomiting?

Acute nausea and vomiting begins with a feeling of nausea that stimulates a series of processes in your body that force the contents of your stomach to be expelled back up through your throat and out of your mouth in the act of vomiting. Gastroenteritis is a common cause of acute nausea and vomiting. Viruses, bacteria and other pathogens may cause such reactions.... Read more about acute nausea and vomitingcauses

Medical Reviewer: All content has been reviewed by board-certified physicians under the direction of Rich Klasco, M.D., FACEP. Last Annual Review Date: May 2, 2011 Copyright: © Copyright 2011 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Digestive System


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