Recurrent vomiting is vomiting that repeatedly occurs. Vomiting, otherwise called emesis, occurs when stomach contents are ousted through the mouth often with force. It is an process that begins from the stomach or small intestine. Since peristaltic waves are able to push food from the mouth downwards into the esophagus and through whatever remains of the gut, the waves regurgitate to the other way. This is known as antiperistalsis.
Vomiting is a result of the actions of the vomiting center of the brain, frequently with contribution from another region known as the chemoreceptor trigger zone (CTZ). It may be caused by overdistention of the gut or irritation in the stomach lining which isn’t identified with any disease. After removing the causative agent, vomiting may stop.
Recurrent vomiting may be synonymous to cyclic vomiting but the latter is known as a separate entity. Recurrent vomiting means that there is at least three episodes of vomiting within a 3 month period that cannot be linked to common causes of acute vomiting.
Recurrent vomiting may have the following symptoms:
- Periods of vomiting alternating with no vomiting for a few hours, days or even weeks
- At least three episodes of vomiting within a 3 month period that cannot be linked to common causes of acute vomiting
The doctor may review your medical history and may conduct a physical exam. Recurrent vomiting is diagnosed when there is at least three episodes of vomiting within a 3 month period that cannot be linked to common causes of acute vomiting.
Tests may be requested such as the following:
- Imaging studies such as endoscopy and ultrasound
- Motility tests
- Laboratory tests like thyroid panel
There’s no exact cure for recurrent vomiting. Treatment may be given to alleviate signs and symptoms.
Medicines that may be given include the following:
- Drugs for vomiting and nausea such as metoclopramide
- Acid-suppressants like Ranitidine and Omeprazole