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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Brenner Children’s pediatric emergency department has moved back to its original location. Learn more

In order to help protect patients, family members and health care workers from the spread of COVID-19, no visitors are allowed at any of Wake Forest Baptist Health’s outpatient or inpatient facilities, except in certain situations.
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A to Z: Gastroenteritis

A to Z: Gastroenteritis

What's in this Article?

A to Z: Gastroenteritis

May also be called: Stomach Flu

Gastroenteritis is an infection that causes vomiting and diarrhea.

More to Know

Gastroenteritis can be due to an infection with a virus, bacteria, or parasites. Also called the "stomach flu," it is contagious and spreads easily in childcare and schools. It often also causes fever.

Stool samples might be tested for bacteria or parasites if there is blood in the stool (poop). Antibiotics are usually not needed except for certain types of infections in young infants and in people with immune problems.

Keep in Mind

Gastroenteritis usually is not serious and generally lasts a few days. The greatest risk from gastroenteritis is dehydration, so it's most important to stay hydrated with plenty of fluids. Young kids are at the highest risk for dehydration.

All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.