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Understanding Nausea and Vomiting -- Symptoms

Nausea and vomiting are symptoms of other conditions. If you feel nauseated, you may have a stomach bug or other type of illness.

Nausea and even vomiting don't always mean you need medical help. However, if the symptoms scare you, call your health care provider.

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Call Your Doctor About Nausea and Vomiting If:

  • You think you have food poisoning and cannot keep food or water down. Nausea and vomiting caused by food poisoning usually appear one to 24 hours after a meal and usually resolves quickly on their own. Some kinds of food poisoning, such as salmonella, may take longer.
  • You have symptoms of nausea that last more than a week. If you are a woman and have been having sex without using birth control, you may be pregnant.
  • You are an adult and have been vomiting for more than 24 hours.
  • Your child under the age of 6 has been vomiting more than a few hours, has diarrhea or signs of dehydration, hasn't urinated for six hours, or has a fever of more than 100 degrees F.
  • Your child aged 6 and older has been vomiting for more than 24 hours, has signs of dehydration, hasn't urinated for six hours, or has a fever of more than 102 degrees F.

 

See a Doctor or Call an Ambulance If:

  • There is blood in the vomit or if the vomit looks like coffee grounds.
  • The person vomiting becomes confused or sleepy or loses alertness.
  • There is a severe headache or stiff neck.
  • There is severe pain in the stomach or gut.
  • There is rapid breathing or rapid pulse.

 

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Lisa B. Bernstein, MD on March 18, 2015

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