Nausea is a feeling of discomfort or upset stomach accompanied by an urge to vomit. According to the Medline website, none of these symptoms constitute a disease on their own, but they can however correspond to different clinical pictures.
The American College of Gastroenterology, explains that vomiting is usually a protective mechanism the body uses to expel any harmful substances ingested, but it can also occur as a consequence of other infectious or inflammatory ailments of the body. Vomiting occurs when the muscles of the abdominal wall strongly contract to create the pressure needed to vomit (retching), although these do not always occur with vomiting, but may precede or follow it.
If nausea and vomiting, which are not particularly serious, persist for several days, the Family Doctor website recommends the patient visit the doctor in order to get tested for dehydration or alterations in the levels of chemical substances in the blood (electrolyte imbalance), and to further research the causes of these symptoms so as to determine, if deemed necessary, the best course of therapy to successfully relieve said symptoms.
Common causes of vomiting:
- Drugs. Nausea and vomiting may be the result of virtually any drug, as drugs may produce an upset stomach, and in other cases intolerance or allergies may occur. Anesthetic substances are especially known to provoke said symptoms, as well as other medications including chemotherapy and radiotherapy used to treat cancer.
- Gastrointestinal Tract Infections, which may be caused by viruses or bacteria, including gallbladder infections (cholecystitis), appendicitis, viral hepatitis and diverticulitis. Other infections that can also produce vomiting and nausea include pneumonia, bladder or kidney infections, meningitis and ear infections.
- Food poisoning.
- Motion sickness.
- Alcohol poisoning.
- Abdominal organ swelling, such as pancreatitis, Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis.
- Migraine or headache.
- Physical or emotional pain.