Cyclic vomiting syndrome is a troubling disorder characterized by episodes of nausea, tiredness, and vomiting. It usually affects children but can really affect any age.
Individuals afflicted with this disorder can suffer from unrelenting nausea, leaving them utterly exhausted. Cyclic vomiting syndrome could be the result of genetics, digestive difficulties, hormone imbalances, and nervous system problems.
However, doctors are not one hundred percent sure what actually causes cyclic vomiting syndrome, though it appears it can be triggered by allergies, colds, sinus problems, and emotional stress.
Signs of Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome
Whatever the reason for cyclic vomiting syndrome, patients should be on the lookout for the warning signs.
1. Severe and Persistent Vomiting
Severe and persistent vomiting that happens multiple times each hour and goes on for hours or days is a significant indicator of cyclic vomiting syndrome.
While vomiting is a symptom in many illnesses, it generally does not come on and stay for a prolonged period. And, since doctors do not really know what triggers it, it can happen at any time.
It is important for individuals experiencing this level of vomiting to stay well hydrated and get a lot of rest. Vomiting can cause a lot of stress on the body, resulting in body aches and discomfort caused by the sheer force of the vomiting.
Patients can hurt their chest by leaning over a toilet bowl or by using the muscles to move the fluids out of their stomach, resulting in bruising and discomfort.
2. Intense Sweating
When individuals vomit, the body implements a sympathetic nervous system response. This response causes sweating and an increased heart rate. The sympathetic nervous system is part of the autonomic nervous system, which is responsible for the regulation of unconscious actions.
This means different functions of the body are turned on when other things happen, like vomiting. When individuals vomit, sweat glands are activated. And, if individuals have a long session of vomiting, they can experience a period of intense sweating.
However, sweating also brings along its myriad of side effects. If individuals sweat too much, they can suffer from dehydration. Patients need to make sure they take in extra fluids to replace those lost during sweating.
Individuals may even need to take in fluids with electrolytes in them so their body is not compromised by losing too many. These precautions are necessary if patients want to combat cyclic vomiting syndrome and stay as healthy as possible.
3. Abdominal Pain
Because cyclic vomiting syndrome is a disorder involving repeated vomiting, patients may get abdominal pain that will either precipitate or accompany it. The pain can cause vomiting or the vomiting may cause abdominal pain.
Spasming in the abdomen can have a detrimental effect on the body, causing it to revolt against it and induce vomiting to try to get rid of whatever may have been causing the discomfort.
However, when individuals are vomiting, the entire body can contract with each spasm, causing muscle discomfort and making the abdomen hurt. Patients may feel like they are bruised and the body can become tired.
The longer the vomiting and pain in the abdomen persist, the more exhausted patients will become. If patients are having abdominal pain coupled with some of the other symptoms, they need to make sure to talk to a doctor.
Another symptom of cyclic vomiting syndrome is diarrhea. During this condition, the bowels can become distressed, resulting in stools becoming loose. This can create great discomfort, just like vomiting.
It also can make the abdomen hurt, as well as the anus. Diarrhea can also quickly dehydrate someone. And, if individuals are vomiting at the same time, they are at an extremely high risk for dehydration.
This is dangerous because when patients are dehydrated, their brain function is affected and many of the body’s systems do not function well and can cause damage.
So, it is that much more important to drink more fluids, including drinks with electrolytes. Sports drinks can help replace electrolytes that are lost when experiencing these symptoms.
5. Gagging or Retching
Vomiting repeatedly causes more than just discomfort. When individuals have finished vomiting everything from their stomachs, it does not mean their body is done trying to do it. This results in gagging or retching, also known as dry heaving.
The body continues to try to vomit, but after expelling stomach contents and any available bile, it keeps trying to get more out.
Gagging and retching can cause patients to use every muscle in their body to try to vomit. Thus, they will experience discomfort and their muscles will ache with each heave. This is because it is the reverse movement of the esophagus and stomach without being able to actually vomit.
It can be difficult to deal with and very frustrating because patients know they have nothing else to vomit, but their body cannot seem to recognize this is the case.