Diarrhea is loose, watery stools (bowel movements). The exact cause of diarrhea is often hard to find. Sometimes diarrhea is your body's way to get rid of what caused an upset stomach. Viruses, a foodborne illness, and many medicines can cause diarrhea. Some people get diarrhea in response to emotional stress, anxiety, or certain foods.
Almost everyone has diarrhea now and then. It usually is not serious, and your stools will return to normal soon. The important thing to do is replace the fluids you have lost to prevent dehydration.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of: November 20, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
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