Ask Gastroenterology Experts: Food Poisoning

Ask Gastroenterology Experts: Food Poisoning

Ask Gastroenterology Experts: Food Poisoning

Food poisoning is one of those diseases that makes us all shudder just a little. Whether you’ve had food poisoning or just heard about it, this health concern is nothing short of unsettling–so today, our gastroenterology experts are going to explore food poisoning and tell you what you need to know.

What is Food Poisoning?

Food poisoning is a disease that can occur when you eat food infected with chemicals, toxins, viruses, parasites, or bacteria. It’s surprisingly widespread; millions of people across the world suffer food poisoning each year, and, unfortunately, some even die from it. Symptoms usually last up to two days, but have been known to last longer–and that’s when it’s extremely important to contact a gastroenterology expert, as long-lasting symptoms can quickly turn serious. Although often used interchangeably, “stomach flu” is not quite the same as food poisoning, because the stomach flu is more generally regarded as any disturbance of the intestinal tract.

What You Need to Know

What are the important details on food poisoning? Let our healthcare professionals explain!

  • Symptoms. Symptoms of food poisoning most commonly include vomiting, diarrhea, cramping, and abdominal pain. More severe symptoms are fever and blood in the stool. Food poisoning can also lead to dehydration and lack of electrolytes, so it’s important to remember to stay hydrated.
  • Types. There are different types of food poisoning, caused by different things. For example, under-cooked fish can cause symptoms of food poisoning; so can mushrooms, raw rice, and meat that has gotten too warm in storage. The types vary in symptoms, longevity, and the length of time before symptoms appear–and some are much more severe than others.
  • Treatment. A doctor should be called if food poisoning symptoms last more than 72 hours or become too severe to allow for rehydration. The disease is usually diagnosed when the patient identifies a suspicious food item that was ingested before symptoms started. Treatment usually involves hydration and certain medications used to control symptoms.

Interested in more info on food poisoning? Looking for gastroenterology experts? Contact us today!

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