Duration Of Current Vomiting Episodes

What Causes Chronic Vomiting?

Chronic vomiting can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'minor' to 'generally fatal'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose chronic vomiting, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "chronic vomiting" as a symptom.  Here are eight of many possibilities (more below):
  • Stomach Cancer
  • Mesenteric Ischemia
  • Chronic Renal Insufficiency
  • Stomach Ulcers
  • Ovarian Cysts
  • Heartburn
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • West Nile Virus

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
regular unexplained vomiting
dizziness when standing up
burning epigastric pain after meals
unusual vaginal bleeding
hoarse voice
loss of appetite
occasional unexplained vomiting
rotten egg burps
magnesium-based antacid use
PPI antacid use
regular rashes
severe abdominal pain
... and more than 80 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of chronic vomiting:
Cause Probability Status
West Nile Virus 91% Confirm
Stomach Cancer 15% Unlikely
Ovarian Cysts 12% Unlikely
Heartburn 5% Ruled out
Mesenteric Ischemia 1% Ruled out
Chronic Renal Insufficiency 0% Ruled out
Stomach Ulcers 0% Ruled out
Hyperparathyroidism 0% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

In the Gastrointestinal Symptoms section of the questionnaire, The Analyst™ will ask the following question about duration of current vomiting episodes:
If you suffer significantly from unexplained vomiting (at least once per week), for how long has this been a problem?
Possible responses:
→ It is not a problem / don't know
→ It started within the last week
→ It started within the last month
→ I've had it for 1 to 3 months
→ I've had it for over 3 months
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate no significant vomiting, recent onset vomiting, vomiting for 1-3 months or chronic vomiting, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
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Gastrointestinal Symptoms