Gastroenteritis is an acute infectious syndrome caused by a micro-organism ingested in contaminated food or water or from other sources.
The virus or bacterium affects the stomach lining and intestines, causing some or all of the following symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal cramps. It sometimes also causes more general symptoms such as fever and headache.
Gastroenteritis is also called:
- Gastric flu
- Diarrhoeal disease
- Traveller's diarrhoea
- Food poisoning
Causes of gastroenteritis
Symptoms of gastroenteritis
Reviewed by Dr Karin Richter, MMed Path (Medical Virology), FC Path(SA) Viro, Dip HIV Man (SA), Dip Obst (SA), MBChB , Clinical Virologist, Senior Lecturer, Department of Medical Virology, University of Pretoria, Faculty of Health Sciences, and Consultant Pathologist, Tshwane Academic Division, National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS)
Previously reviewed by Dr Eftyhia Vardas BSc (Hons), MBBCh, DTM&H, DPH, FC Path (Virol), MMed (Virol), Clinical Virologist, Director HIV AIDS Vaccine Division.