The reflex act of vomiting arose in the process of human evolution and is always preceded by nausea. Both nausea and vomiting are subcortical reflexes, therefore, they cannot be suppressed by an effort of will, and human consciousness cannot control them. The main purpose of vomiting is to cleanse the body of toxins, poisons, chemical compounds that have entered it from the outside or produced by its own tissues and organs.
Various pathologies and conditions manifest themselves as nausea and vomiting. These may be the only symptoms of the disease, or reflex acts are combined with other symptoms. Vomiting is always preceded by nausea - a feeling that is difficult to confuse with other sensations. Symptoms of nausea - "sucking in the spoon", increased salivation (salivation), the person becomes pale, he is thrown into cold sweat, the feeling of nausea and fainting increases.
Vomiting is the release through the esophagus and the mouth of the stomach contents to the outside. It manifests itself in seizures caused by contractions of the abdominal muscles. Vomiting is accompanied by stomach pains, the person becomes covered with a sticky cold sweat. With the emetic act, the larynx and soft palate rise, and the epiglottis drops, which protects the airways from getting vomit into them.
The vomiting center, located in one of the ventricles of the brain, is responsible for the occurrence of this complex reflex. It is excited by an increase in intracranial pressure, exposure to impulses from the labyrinth of the inner ear, from mental stimuli, chemical reactions excited by the ingress of poisons, toxins, drugs into the blood, as well as by irritation of individual receptors in various parts of the body. The most sensitive receptors are located on the back wall of the pharynx, and the peritoneum, mesenteric vessels, and bile ducts are also supplied with them.
Causes of nausea and vomiting:
- Pathologies and damage to various parts of the central nervous system;
- Food, medicinal, alcoholic intoxication;
- Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract;
- Psychogenic causes;
- Very severe pain of any origin.
Vomiting is not a specific symptom, but the assessment of its features in combination with other manifestations and the study of vomit can greatly facilitate the diagnosis of diseases.
- What disease can persistent vomiting indicate?
- Why can there be vomiting of water?
- Could there be vomiting with mucus and why?
- Could there be black vomit and is it dangerous?
- What disease can there be a temperature of 38 and vomiting?
- Can antibiotics cause vomiting?
- Can the temperature rise after vomiting and why?
- Can worms provoke vomiting?
- Complications and consequences of vomiting
- First aid for vomiting
- How to stop vomiting?
- How to relieve vomiting after alcohol?
- Which doctor should I go to?
What disease can persistent vomiting indicate?
There are various groups of diseases that occur with constant vomiting. Depending on the nature of its occurrence and characteristics, the disease is diagnosed:
- Central vomiting - meningitis, migraine, hypertensive crisis, encephalitis, glaucoma, brain tumors and abscess, inner ear lesions;
- Psychogenic vomiting - hysterical neurosis, anorexia, attacks of cyclic vomiting in children;
- Hematogenous-toxic vomiting - uremia, acetonemic vomiting in diabetes mellitus, porphyria, carbon monoxide poisoning, alcohol, drugs, cytostatics, radiopaque substances, exposure to toxins of viruses and bacteria in infectious lesions;
- Visceral vomiting - pathology of the gastrointestinal tract (gastritis, peptic ulcer, duodenitis), diseases of the biliary and urinary tract, acute appendicitis, pyloric stenosis, atony and gastric paresis;
- Vomiting with a putrid odor - stomach cancer;
- Vomiting with a fecal odor - intestinal obstruction;
- Bloody vomiting - gastrointestinal bleeding;
- Vomiting with bile - complications after surgery on the stomach, biliary colic, narrowing of the duodenum;
- Vomiting with undigested food - gastric achilia, esophageal achalasia.
To clarify the diagnosis, a bacteriological, chemical, cytological study of vomit is carried out, the relationship of vomiting with food intake is studied (vomiting in the morning, early, late, on an empty stomach, night and cyclic).
Why can there be vomiting of water?
This type of vomiting is extremely rare, except for the artificially induced vomiting during gastric lavage.
Causes of water vomiting in children:
- Runny nose;
- Pathologies of the ear, throat, nose.
All these reasons are due to the ingestion of large amounts of mucus in the stomach. It flows from the nasal and oral cavity through the throat and esophagus into the stomach. Irritation of his mucous membrane causes vomiting. The consequence of this is vomiting with water without impurities.
In the absence of visible causes of the disease, this symptom manifests itself due to excessive dryness of the air, exposure to air in frosty weather, and also due to an allergic reaction. In this case, the release of a large volume of mucus is a protective reaction of the body to the negative influence of the environment. Then everything happens according to the above algorithm - mucus irritates the gastric mucosa, where it gets in excess.
It is not difficult to eliminate this symptom in children, you need to create optimal conditions for life and cure the pathology of the ENT organs.
If water vomiting is diagnosed in an adult, it may be due to long breaks between meals. Gastric juice is secreted reflexively, and the longer the break between meals, the more juice is formed in the stomach. If a large amount of juice causes vomiting, it may appear as if it is vomiting with water. Visually, these liquids almost do not differ from each other.
For various reasons, a person does not feel that he is hungry, however, the body needs food. This condition results in excessive gastric acid production and vomiting similar to water.
Could there be vomiting with mucus and why?
An admixture of mucus is found in many pathologies in both children and adults. Diseases in which vomiting with mucus is diagnosed:
- Rotavirus ("intestinal flu");
- Diet disorders in chronic gastritis;
Acute erosive gastritis;
- Damage to the mucous membrane with alkalis or acids (suicide attempt, accident).
Vomiting with mucus in infants is a normal variant. However, in this age group, such vomiting may be the result of mucus accumulation during bronchial inflammation. An infant cannot cough it up due to age. When children eat foods of a special consistency (milk, jelly, fruit juices with pulp), vomiting with mucus is also observed.
Could there be black vomit and is it dangerous?
Black vomiting can be a sign of serious pathology or have a physiological cause. Some products color vomit black: chocolate, berries with dark pulp, etc. Knowing about their use on the eve of vomiting, you can focus only on stopping this unpleasant symptom.
Vomiting in the form of "coffee grounds" is a great danger. It indicates bleeding in the stomach or duodenum. The peculiar appearance of the blood indicates that it has oxidized and coagulated under the influence of gastric juice.
Diseases that cause bleeding in the digestive tract:
- Neoplasms of any etiology (tumors, polyps);
- Injury to the lining of the stomach or intestines;
- Hemorrhagic disease;
- Ulcerative lesions of the stomach or small intestine;
- Side effects of drugs that can cause damage to the stomach or intestines (Indomethacin, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, drugs, steroid hormones);
Gastric or intestinal bleeding is accompanied by dizziness, weakness. The patient's skin becomes pale, there is a feeling of apathy, a person may faint. These symptoms are the reason for an immediate call for an ambulance, as delay can be life-threatening. If black vomiting is the only symptom, you should still see your doctor as soon as possible.
What disease can there be a temperature of 38 and vomiting?
Diseases in which there is a combination of vomiting and high fever:
- Acute appendicitis;
- Acute respiratory viral infection;
- Acute gastroenteritis;
- Colds (bronchitis, tracheitis, pneumonia);
- Intestinal infection.
In the vast majority of cases, these symptoms are observed precisely with gastrointestinal infections. Children can react with vomiting to a rapid rise in temperature in any inflammatory process.
The initial manifestations of an intestinal infection and a viral disease are very similar: in both cases, there is hyperthermia, redness of the throat, and vomiting. Specific symptoms appear a little later.
In any case, when vomiting is combined with a temperature of 38, an "emergency aid" must be called urgently. It is impossible to differentiate poisoning from an attack of appendicitis without a medical examination. Acute appendicitis requires urgent surgical intervention, serious poisoning involves treatment in a hospital.
On the subject: How and how to bring down the temperature of an adult?
Can antibiotics cause vomiting?
Antibiotic drugs have a large number of side effects, and vomiting occurs when these drugs are used along with other symptoms.
The reasons for the appearance of vomiting while taking antibiotics:
- Vomiting is a side effect of a particular drug;
- There is an incompatibility of the antibiotic with drugs taken simultaneously from other pharmacological groups;
- During antibiotic therapy, there was a disturbance in the diet or alcohol consumption.
The appearance of vomiting directly depends on the form in which the drug is taken. Antibiotics in pill form are more likely to induce vomiting than the same drugs used in injectable form. Do not give up on a particular medication if oral use causes vomiting. Intravenous or intramuscular injection is worth trying. Adjusting the dosage towards a decrease in the volume or frequency of taking the drug will reduce the risk of this unpleasant side effect, but at the same time, the effectiveness of the treatment may suffer.
Antibiotics that can induce vomiting:
- Azithromycin (Sumamed);
- Ciprofloxacin (Tsiprobay, Tsiprinol, Tsiprolet);
- Metronidazole (Trichopolum, Metrogyl);
- Cefpodoxime (Cefodox);
Drugs that provoke vomiting when used simultaneously with antibiotics:
- NSAIDs (Ibuprofen, Aspirin, Diclofenac, Indomethacin);
- Cardiac glycosides;
- Potassium sulfate, ferrous sulfate;
- Antiviral agents.
Alcohol and the consumption of fatty foods during antibiotic therapy provoke vomiting and increase this side effect.
Can the temperature rise after vomiting and why?
An increase in temperature after vomiting indicates that there is poisoning, hepatitis, intestinal infection (salmonellosis, dysentery). Poisoning with poor quality food manifests itself as diarrhea, a combination of nausea and vomiting, and abdominal pain. An increase in temperature can be observed after vomiting. This suggests that toxins have entered the bloodstream. Despite the fact that an attack of vomiting somewhat reduced the amount of poisons that entered the body, even a minimal amount of them can cause hyperthermia.
Measures for detoxification of the body:
- Gastric lavage;
- Taking diuretics (Furosemide);
- Reception of sorbents (Polysorb, Enterosgel).
If these measures did not give the desired effect, and the temperature did not return to normal, most likely the cause of hyperthermia is intestinal infection (dysentery, salmonellosis) or viral hepatitis. To clarify the diagnosis, you need to consult an infectious disease doctor.
Can worms provoke vomiting?
Worm infestations provoke vomiting in both children and adults. Its appearance is specific - it is foamy white discharge. It does not appear immediately after infection, but after 2-3 weeks.
At the first stage, a sick person may develop a dry cough and dermatitis, which in appearance resembles urticaria with allergies. At the end of the first stage, nausea, profuse salivation, and signs of anxiety join these symptoms.
The appearance of vomiting with white foam is a reason for contacting a parasitologist or infectious disease specialist. An accurate diagnosis is made after the analysis of feces for eggs of worms in a specialized laboratory.
Complications and consequences of vomiting
Short-term vomiting does not cause significant harm to the human body. In contrast, prolonged vomiting causes serious metabolic disorders.
Complications and consequences of prolonged vomiting:
- There is a decrease in the volume of intracellular fluid, loss of hydrogen ions, alkalosis develops - a change in the acid-base balance towards alkaline substances;
- As a result of the loss of potassium and its excessive excretion by the kidneys, hypokalemia occurs;
- Metabolic disorders lead to loss of consciousness and paralysis;
- As a consequence of hypokalemia, arrhythmia, muscle weakness, nocturnal polyuria appear - an increase in the volume of excreted urine along with frequent nocturnal urination;
- With severe vomiting, rupture of the esophageal mucosa, transmural rupture of the esophagus, rupture of the mucous membrane of the esophageal-gastric junction, accompanied by profuse bleeding, is possible.
These complications are especially relevant for children, debilitated patients, and the elderly. Patients with impaired psyche can aspirate vomit into the airways. These complications lead to respiratory disorders, the occurrence of aspiration pneumonia.
First aid for vomiting
With the help of vomiting, the human body is freed from toxic substances.
The exception is vestibular disturbances during motion sickness, a condition after a traumatic brain injury, severe nervous tension, stress.
First aid rules:
- You can not stop the emetic act, you should wait for its completion;
- After this, the person needs to be seated, cover his chest and knees with a towel or clean rag, put a bucket, a basin at an accessible distance;
- If a person suffering from an attack of vomiting can only be in a prone position, you need to try to keep his head below chest level;
- In an unconscious patient, the head should be tilted to one side so that he does not choke on vomit;
- After each attack, you need to rinse your mouth with cool water;
- Bed rest with such attacks is observed only if you feel unwell;
- To stop vomiting, use Motilium, Cerucal, mint drops, Scopolamine (with motion sickness), if necessary, a sorbent (activated carbon).
Particular caution should be exercised if there are blood impurities in the vomit, they look like coffee grounds. This is a sign of gastric bleeding and requires immediate medical attention. Loss of large amounts of fluid from vomiting leads to dehydration. It is necessary to return the lost fluid as soon as possible with plenty of drinking and restore the optimal concentration of mineral salts.
Solutions for relief of mineral deficiency:
- Rehydron, Trisol - normalizes water-electrolyte balance, prevents dehydration;
- Gastrolite - in addition to the above properties, it has an anti-inflammatory effect, since the drug contains chamomile extract. The tour is poured with boiling water and insisted until it cools completely;
- Salt solution of your own preparation - add 1 tsp for 1 liter of boiled water. salt, 1/2 tsp. soda, 7 tsp. sugar, mix thoroughly until the components are completely dissolved.
Any saline solution should be drunk in small sips at intervals of 5-10 minutes. You can alternate this drink with unsweetened tea or 5% glucose solution. This technique will help to avoid an excess of salts.
How to stop vomiting?
This symptom occurs for many reasons. Vomiting can be eliminated by applying in each case a specific etiotropic treatment aimed at combating the cause of the disease. If the cause cannot be identified, symptomatic agents are used to stop vomiting.
- If the vestibular apparatus is disturbed, causing vomiting during motion sickness, take Scopolamine, Ciel. The optimal dose is 1-2 tablets 2-3 times a day. Contraindications to the use of the drug Ciel - driving a car, as it reduces concentration;
- Vomiting after chemotherapy and radiation therapy in the treatment of malignant neoplasms, as well as repeated bouts of vomiting against the background of gastroenteritis, are eliminated with the drugs Emetron and Setronon. The main active ingredient of these funds is ondansetron, the release form is tablets, injection solution. Contraindications - hepatitis of various etiology;
- Vomiting, the appearance of which is associated with the work of the central nervous system, is successfully stopped with the drugs Motilium and Cerucal. It can occur with migraine, traumatic brain injury, renal failure, stomach atony, gastroenteritis. The drugs are taken 1 tablet before meals 3-4 times a day;
- Vomiting, as a symptom of the pathology of the gastrointestinal tract, is eliminated with the drug Cisapride (Coordinax). The remedy is more effective than Cerucal and Motilium, but its spectrum of action is limited by the digestive system. Scheme of use - 1-2 tablets before meals;
- Vomiting caused by toxicosis of pregnancy is stopped with the homeopathic drug Kokkulin.
How to relieve vomiting after alcohol?
Alcohol abuse of low quality or excessive use of alcohol in most cases causes severe vomiting. It is accompanied by extremely unpleasant sensations, as it is always combined with severe and painful stomach cramps. Alcohol breakdown products in combination with semi-digested food, passing through the esophagus and oral cavity, irritate their mucous membrane. All these sensations leave the impression of vomiting after drinking alcohol, as a painful and difficult process.
Vomiting is a kind of protection of the body from the absorption of toxic substances into the blood, formed as a result of the breakdown of ethanol. Therefore, it is not necessary to stop the process, on the contrary, in many cases it is vomiting that helps to reduce the consequences of alcohol poisoning.
To alleviate the condition of a person with alcohol vomiting, they act as follows:
- A soda solution is prepared to soften the acidity of the vomit at the rate of 2 tbsp. l. soda per liter of water. You need to drink as much soda solution as possible before the onset of vomiting;
- After the first attack of vomiting, rinse your mouth with clean water with the addition of lemon juice;
- Prepare a talker from crushed activated carbon (2 tbsp. L. Coal powder per 1 liter of water) and give it to drink whenever possible. If vomiting is over, activated charcoal will bind the remaining toxins in the digestive tract;
- If vomiting after the coal talker has resumed, rinse your mouth and drink one of the enterosorbents available in the home medicine cabinet (Enterosorb, Polysorb, Polyphepan) to bind toxins remaining in the stomach and intestines;
- Each episode of vomiting ends with rinsing the mouth and drinking mineral water.
Which doctor should I go to?
To diagnose a disease manifested by vomiting, you need to contact a gastroenterologist or a therapist. If the symptom is central vomiting, it may well be necessary to consult a neurologist, and with psychogenic vomiting, a psychotherapist.
Treatment of vomiting is impossible without a thorough diagnosis of the underlying disease and treatment of its manifestations. You should not ignore the manifestations of the gag reflex, they can be a symptom of dangerous pathologies.
Author of the article: Alekseeva Maria Yurievna | Therapist
Education: From 2010 to 2016 Practitioner of the therapeutic hospital of the central medical-sanitary unit No. 21, city of elektrostal. Since 2016 she has been working in the diagnostic center No. 3.