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Forum Name: Viral Infections

Question: Diagnosed with "Stomach Flu," questions about symptoms


 jbs - Thu Mar 06, 2008 12:02 pm

Last Wednesday (February 27) I woke up with dry heaves, nausea, and extreme fatigue. An FNP at a walk-in clinic said I had the stomach flu that is going around. I had several days of intense nausea, but only dry heaves (no vomiting, really) and soft stool but no real diarrhea or cramping.

On Saturday I went to the ER as I was barely able to get out of bed. Was treated for mild dehydration and sent home. Blood tests, urine tests, negative pregnancy test. (My last period began on February 14, so the pregnancy test was given 16 days later. I have not had unprotected sex since getting my period.)

It is now 9 days later, and I am still ill. Mainly, I wake up in the middle of the night (I'm having extreme difficulty sleeping) a bit nauseated. Usually get up with extreme nausea and dry heaves (though no dry heaves this morning for the first time, just nausea). The past two days, the nausea subsides by 10:00 or so and I'm just a bit belchy.

Because of nausea, I'm not eating much (5-6 small, bland meals). Am drinking water and tea and occasional sports drink or popsicle. I have very little energy, especially when I first wake up. Doctor suggested avoiding eating too much, but I'm afraid that might be contributing to my nausea and weakness (as is my sleeplessness).

This is not like any "stomach flu" I've had before. Also, I've been pregnant before and it wasn't like this, either.

My questions: I'm just getting kind of desperate. I've been sick for 9 days, which is exhausting and a strain on my family. Are these symptoms normal for the flu? Why would I feel so much worse in the morning? What is it okay for me to eat/drink (e.g. is there dairy in things like Ensure shakes that would be bad for me)? Can I take something to help me sleep? If the hospital pregnancy test was negative, is that reliable? When can I expect to feel like myself again?

I just don't know what to do--doctors won't open up "new patient" appointment for me for weeks yet. Please, any information you can give me would be so helpful. Thank you.
 Debbie Miller, RN - Wed Apr 02, 2008 9:00 pm

User avatar Hello,
I apologize that it has taken so long for us to get to this post. I do hope you are feeling better by now.

If, in fact, you had the flu, it is not uncommon for it to last 10 days to two weeks. Flu can make you most miserable and can result in dehydration. It usually involves fever and often respiratory symptoms as well.

I can't diagnose this over the internet, especially when the doctor who saw you couldn't say for sure, but you should know there are thousands of viruses and each person can respond in their own way to this invasion. I suspect this is the case for you and that your body will get a handle on it and you will heal. If it continues, you may as well keep the new patient appointment and let them evaluate your symptoms to see if there is an underlying problem.

Best wishes.

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