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Saturday, October 1, 2011

Diarrhoea: Clinical assessment and some important points

Clinical assessment of diarrhea:

The patient should be asked about:

1. The foods ingested
2. The duration and frequency of defecation

3. The presence of blood or mucus in stool
4. Abdominal pain and tenesmus (A feeling that you constantly need to pass stool even though your bowels are already empty
5. Whether family members are affected


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Some important points:

Fever+Diarrhea+Blood in stool suggests an invasive, colitic, dysenteric process.
Incubation period less than 18 hours suggests toxin mediated food poisoning.
Incubation period more than 5 days suggest diarrhea due to protozoa or helminthes.

Note: In the making of the above article, following books were used:

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