What's Going Around

In Okemos, it's viral gastroenteritis, or the stomach flu, that's keeping Dr. Dennis Perry at Meridian Primary Care busy this week.

The main symptoms are stomach cramping or discomfort, bloating, nausea with or without vomiting, and diarrhea. Fever is less common, but a low-grade fever under 101 degrees may be present.

Most cases will clear up on their own after a few days.

You should let your stomach settle by not eating or drinking for a few hours.

Start with small amounts of fluids and, once you can keep liquid down, adults should drink a lot of Gatorade to replenish the body's electrolytes; kids should drink a lot of Pedialyte.

You can start a BRAT diet (bananas, rice, applesauce, toast) after 24 hours without vomiting.

The most dangerous complication to watch out for is dehydration due to excessive diarrhea or vomiting. Young children and the elderly are particularly susceptible.

Seek immediate medical attention if signs of dehydration are present. Those signs include: excessive thirst, dry mouth, little to no urine, or severe weakness or dizziness.


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