Diarrhea is a very common condition and is usually not a large concern when it comes to your health. Diarrhea is so minor that it is usually a symptom of other diseases. It is also an indicator of other serious conditions that could be life threatening if left untreated for too long. This is why it is important to pay attention to your gastrointestinal functions and movements on a regular basis.
Diarrhea’s most dangerous cases differ between infants and adults, so it is important to contact your Gastroenterology specialist if your child hasn’t had a wet diaper in more than 3 hours, has a fever, has red or black stools, cries without tears, has a sunken appearance in the face or stomach or does not have skin retention from pinching. If your child has any one of these symptoms, you should immediately contact your child’s pediatrician or seek immediate medical help within 24 hours. If you are an adult that experiences:
- Abdominal cramping
- Abdominal pain
- Bloody or red stools
- Frequent, loose, watery stools
Then you may have diarrhea and should increase your electrolyte count. If your symptoms continue for more than 2 to 3 days and/or you experience:
- Dehydration; Dark urine, extreme thirst, little urination but many watery stools, dizziness or lightheadedness, and severe weakness
- Fever in excess of 102 degrees Fahrenheit
You should contact Arlington Gastroenterology Services for diagnosis and treatment. The diarrhea itself may be easily treatable, but can point to a much greater concern like Inflammatory Bowel Disease. This is a great concern because IBD can be one of three debilitating diseases, or a dangerous cocktail of the three. All three of these diseases have life threatening potential and all three of them require medical attention and constant treatment.
Diarrhea can be set off by a seemingly endless list of causes; not all of them dangerous, but not all of them minor. Like mentioned earlier, some of these causes are extreme and require medical attention as well as treatment. Some causes are:
- Artificial sweeteners
- Bacterial infections
- Celiac Disease
- Crohn’s Disease
- Food poisoning
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Lactose intolerance
- Microscopic Colitis
- Parasitical infections
- Some medications
- Ulcerative Colitis
- Virus infections
These are all probable causes of diarrhea and any of these causes point to the need to seek treatment from your Arlington Gastroenterology Specialist. If you have some of the symptoms listed and are seeking treatment, you should contact us to schedule an appointment for diagnosis and treatment.