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Forum Name: Gastroenterology Topics

Question: Drank Contaminated Water - Now Vomit/Diarrhea


 Sharpie - Fri Mar 27, 2009 6:33 pm

I live in the North Dakota area which is currently being flooded. I was drinking water out of our sink when I noticed it was foul tasting (after I had a full glass). I assumed I had an unclean glass and thought nothing of it. Then, the sink started to smell horrible as well. Apparently, it turns out our water supply was contaminated by the river/sewer (I'm not sure which). A few hours later I became extremely sick. My stomach felt like every muscle was tightening and it was very painful. Then, it started burning and I became nauseated. Eventually, I threw up and it was the worst peculiar tasting vomit ever. MUCH worse than any other time in my life I had been sick. Now, I'm not nauseated anymore, but I have frequent diarrhea. Is this all caused by the water? Is there something I should be doing to treat myself? Or will this all go away and I shouldn't worry.
 John Kenyon, CNA - Tue Mar 31, 2009 9:35 pm

User avatar Hello --

So long as this doesn't progress to more serious symptoms (especially fever), and doesn't get worse (it seems to be improving), and doesn't last more than 72 hours, it's probably ok to just wait it out. If it should get worse or lasts longer than 72 hours, definitely be seen by a medical professional. Your GI tract will generally throw out stuff it finds offensive, even on aesthetic grounds, but given the situation where you are, it's possible you could have picked up something infectious. You should know soon enough. Again, so long as it doesn't last long and improves with no new symptoms, it's probably just purgative in nature. If you start to feel ill, by all means see an MD. Sounds like it should be fine, though.

Good luck to you! Follow up with us as needed.

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