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):
  • Malaria
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome
  • Rapid Stomach Emptying
  • Pancreatitis
  • Epstein-Barr Virus
  • Food Poisoning
  • Zinc Toxicity

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:
meals worsen top-left abdomen pain
occasional unexplained vomiting
edema of the hands
minor joint pain/swelling/stiffness
major unexplained weight loss
frequent unexplained nausea
slight abdominal distension
blood transfusions
having watery stools
current atypical headaches
diarrhea for 1-3 months
reduced mental clarity
... and more than 50 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
Epstein-Barr Virus 94% Confirm
Malaria 22% Unlikely
Zinc Toxicity 13% Unlikely
Pancreatitis 5% Ruled out
Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome 3% Ruled out
Food Poisoning 3% Ruled out
Gastroenteritis 3% Ruled out
Rapid Stomach Emptying 2% 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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