GI diseases

Gastritis
is a disease in in which the lining of the stomach lining is inflamed making it
to produce less acid and enzymes, and less mucus and other substances that
normally needed to protect the stomach lining from acidic digestive juice.
Gastritis can be acute or chronic, but it can also be erosive or nonerosive. The
most common causes of gastritis include Helicobacter
pylori, infection, damage to the stomach lining causing reactive
gastritis which may be due to usage of NSAIDS, alcohol, cocaine, radiation,
stress caused by traumatic injuries (CDC & NIH,  2016).  Also, an autoimmune
response can also be one of main causes of gastritis. People with gastritis usually
present with symptoms of pain or discomfort in the upper part of the abdomen.
Also, other symptoms may include nausea and vomiting. Sometimes, some people
may have Signs and symptoms of bleeding in the stomach caused by erosive
gastritis, including shortness of breath, dizziness, hematemesis, black, tarry
stools, hematochezia, weakness, paleness, which need immediate attention. When
gastritis is not treated appropriately, some complications may occur due to
chronic gastritis, such as peptic ulcers, anemia, vitamin B12 deficiency and pernicious anemia(CDC
& NIH, 2016).

Diagnosing
gastritis can be done based on the following ways according to studies: a good
medical history, physical exam, upper endoscopy along other tests such as upper
GI series, blood tests, stool test for H pylori and blood, and urea breath test
to help detect H. pylori infection
in the GI tract. Once gastritis is detected, there are many measures and
treatment that a health care provider can use. First, it is suggested to treat
the underlying cause first, and reduce the amount of acid in the stomach by prescribing
medications like antacids, H2 blockers and proton pump inhibitors that can help
promote healing of the stomach lining (CDC, 2016; Elliot, 2007). Education about preventive measures
can also important factors in treatment. For instance, health care providers can
advise people to help preventing the infection by washing their hands with soap
and water before eating or after using bathroom, eat food are washed well and well
cooked, and clean drinking water from safe source (CDC & NIH, 2016).

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Gastroenteritis

In comparison, gastroenteritis, as another GI system
disease, is an inflammation of the lining of the intestines that is often caused
by either a virus, bacteria or parasites. The most common causes of viral
gastroenteritis are norovirus and rotavirus
infections that spread through
contaminated food or water and contact with an infected person. People who are
at higher risk of gastroenteritis are children in daycare, military persons,
travelers and students living in dorms, and people with weak immune system. Symptoms
of gastroenteritis often include diarrhea, abdominal pain,
vomiting, headache, fever, nausea and vomiting, and chills. Other symptoms are diarrhea,
poor feeding in infants, excessive sweating, Clammy skin, muscle pain or joint
stiffness (CDC, 2016; Elliot, 2007).. People with gastritis may become
dehydrated quickly due to symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea. Therefore, signs
of dehydration are important factors in physical exam. Nevertheless, people
usually recover from gastroenteritis with no treatment. Diagnosing of
gastroenteritis can be made based on medical history and physical examination.
One of the most important treatment in gastroenteritis is to keep the patients
dehydrated. the replacement of fluids and electrolytes that are lost due to
diarrhea and vomiting in gastroenteritis is the most vital factor when treating
gastroenteritis (CDC, 2016; Elliot, 2007).. Antibiotics are usually not advised
since the disease is mostly caused by virus.

Antiemetics are often not
recommended because the vomiting related to gastroenteritis disorder is usually
self-limited and also giving an antiemetic such as Zofran may increase the possibility
of dehydration, electrolyte imbalance, pulmonary aspiration, IV hydration or
hospitalization.

 Also, further
preventions such as proper hygiene by washing hands frequently before and
after, eat washed and well coked food are as well important. According to research
studies, the best prevention is frequent hand washing (CDC,
2016; Elliot, 2007).

 

Cholecystitis

Finally, cholecystitis is
another GI disease that can be compared as a differential diagnosis. cholecystitis is disease caused due
to inflammation of the gallbladder, which may become a serious condition later.
There are two main causes of cholecystitis: calculous cholecystitis and
acalculous cholecystitis. Calculous cholecystitis, the most common but less
serious, often develops when the cystic duct is blocked by a gallstone or a
biliary sludge, which is a mix of bile and cholesterol crystals and salt (Huffman & Schenker, 2010). Once the cystic duct is blocked, there is a building up of
that biliary sludge in the gallbladder causing an increase in pressure and
causing also the inflammation of the gallbladder. However, acalculous
cholecystitis, which is less common but have more serious effect, occurs because
of an infection or injury that damages the gallbladder. Common diseases causing
acalculous cholecystitis are burns, sepsis, severe malnutrition, AIDS, major
damage associated with a surgery (Huffman
& Schenker, 2010).

People with cholecystitis often
present with signs and symptoms of upper right quadrant sudden sharp pain radiating
to right shoulder that can be constant or stay for few minutes, tender abdomen,
breathing difficulty, fever, nausea and vomiting, sweating, loss of appetite,
and jaundice. History and physical along physical examination are important
aspects in helping to diagnosing cholecystitis. Also, some tests that should be
considered are blood tests ERS and CRP, an ultrasound of abdomen to check for
stone, X-ray, Ct scan or MRI to examine the gallbladder (Huffman & Schenker, 2010). As compare to the above GI disorders, people who are
diagnosed with cholecystitis should be treated in a hospital setting. Treatments
are as followed: keep patient NPO to help straining off the gallbladder, give
IV fluids to prevent dehydration, pain medication. If an infection is
suspected, it is advised that antibiotics should be administered. However,
sometimes those treatments may not be sufficient, and there is a need for
surgery, removal of the gallbladder to prevent complications. Surgery can be done
in two ways: laparoscopic cholecystectomy and open cholecystectomy. Cholecystitis can be prevented by adopting
a healthy and balanced diet with low cholesterol food to prevent gallstones
formation, but also avoiding a low calorie and rapid weight loss (Huffman & Schenker, 2010).

 

References

Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention. Norovirus Accessed 4/7/2016.

National
Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Viral Gastroenteritis Accessed  

        2016

Elliott EJ. Acute
gastroenteritis in children. BMJ. 2007;334(7583):35–40.

Huffman, Jason L. & Schenker,
Steven (2010). Acute Acalculous Cholecystitis: A Review.

        Journal of Clinical
Gastroenterology and hepatology, Volume
8, Issue 1, Pages 15–22.

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