Acute Gastroenteritis

This year’s winter is definitely more unique than ever. Temperatures in high 50’s and no snow on Christmas has altered winter break plans as well as the cycle for the most common pediatric condition such as acute gastroenteritis (AGE), commonly known as “stomach flu”.

AGE usually presents with vomiting, diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramping pain. In medical literature, diarrhea is defined as a passage of three or more loose or watery stools per day (or more frequent passages of stool than is normal for the individual). Frequent passage of formed stools is not diarrhea, nor is passing of pasty stool by a breastfed infant.

Vomiting is usually the first of presenting symptoms, and more commonly than not, it occurs in the middle of the night. After emesis subsides, diarrhea begins. Ongoing fluid and electrolyte losses lead to dehydration in children which is the major cause of morbidity in children with acute gastroenteritis. Continue reading “Acute Gastroenteritis”