Diarrhea

Please click here to read detailed information about diarrhea including symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment. 

When to seek medical attention right away

Diarrhea can become dangerous if it leads to severe dehydration. Diarrhea may also signal a more serious problem.

Adults

Adults with any of the following symptoms should see a doctor right away:

-diarrhea lasting more than 2 days

-fever of 102 degrees or higher

-frequent vomiting

-six or more loose stools in 24 hours

-severe pain in the abdomen or rectum

-stools that are black and tarry or contain blood or pus

-symptoms of dehydration

-Older adults and adults with weakened immune systems or other health conditions who have diarrhea should also see a doctor right away.

 

Infants, Toddlers, and Young Children

The parent or caretaker of an infant, toddler, or young child with diarrhea and any of the following symptoms should seek a doctor’s care right away:

-diarrhea lasting more than 24 hours

-fever of 102 degrees or higher

-severe pain in the abdomen or rectum

-stools containing blood or pus

-stools that are black and tarry

-symptoms of dehydration (no wet diapers for > 8 hours, top of head sunken in, no tears when crying, dry mouth)

Adult OTC Options for diarrhea (refer to pediatric section for less than 12 years old)

 

In most cases, you can treat your acute diarrhea with over-the-counter medicines such as loperamide (Imodium) and bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol, Kaopectate).

 

NOTE: Doctors generally do not recommend using over-the-counter medicines for people who have bloody stools or fever—signs of infection with bacteria or parasites. If your diarrhea lasts more than 2 days, see a doctor right away.

1) Pepto-Bismol/Kaopectate

2) Loperamide 

3) FiberCon

4) Metamucil 

5) Probiotic