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Vomiting and Nausea (cont.)

When to Seek Medical Care

Call a health care professional if the nausea is so severe that the affected individual is unable to care of him or herself, or if the vomiting is so bad the person can't keep any liquids down at all for more than 8 hours.

  • If you are taking care of a child, call for medical advice if the child does not urinate (or has dry diapers) in 6 to 8 hours. Signs and symptoms of dehydration in children and dehydration in adults (severe loss of body fluids) include weakness, dizziness, lightheadedness - these symptoms are worse when standing - dry mouth and lips, less urine than normal, dark-yellow and smelly urine, and severe thirst.

Seek medical attention at a hospital's emergency department if:

  • You are experiencing nausea or vomiting and severe belly pain
  • Vomiting accompanied with fever, especially in a child
  • Vomiting blood. Blood may be bright red or dark red. Old blood may look brown (like coffee grounds)
  • Vomiting won't stop and you are unable to keep any fluids down
  • You have a known head injury before vomiting occurred
  • There are other medical conditions present such as heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease, or diabetes
  • You are unable to take your daily medications for other medical conditions
  • You observe any signs of confusion or extreme weakness
  • A new or severe headache is also present
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/21/2013
Medical Editor:

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome »

Cyclic vomiting syndrome (CVS) is a chronic functional disorder of unknown etiology that is characterized by paroxysmal, recurrent episodes of vomiting and was first described in children by Samuel Gee in 1882.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


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