Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Your Health: Stomach Diseases

As I mentioned before, I was traveling abroad a week ago. Like a lot of people who travel to foreign places, I returned with some tummy problems. And they persisted. Until I hit the WebMD point. You know, the point where you're like, "Hm, I better WebMD this."

We have a tradition here at Insufficient Fare of presenting you with accurate and informative information on health topics (no really, we do -- I had a post about embarrassing diseases on our old blog, The Blog That Shall Not Be Named) and have decided it's high time for another installment.

Today: Stomach diseases; is there something nasty in there?
The answer is yes, it's probably something nasty as hell. Here are a couple of things that WebMD says could have been going on in my very own stomach, as little as 4 days ago:

This one sounds like fun, doesn't it?! Like camp! And it is like camp, if your camp's cook didn't properly wash her hands after using the restroom or encountering infected dog or cat stool. This bacteria is one of the most common causes of diarrhea in the United States, affecting, in the bathroom sense, 2 million people each year, and usually lasting about a week.

This one is also caused by a bacteria, namely the parasite Giardia lamblia. Web MD tells me you can get this either from consuming human waste or working in a day care center. This is why I love kids. A small percentage of people can develop a long-term infection, so phew! Dodged that bullet!

Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Apparently, your lower intestine can just become inflamed, and nobody knows why! It's a mystery! If you become inflamed enough to have bloody diarrhea,* try to keep it in check, because "iron deficiency anemia due to blood loss" is also on the symptoms list.

Colon Cancer
Fingers crossed it wasn't this one. I could see this one coming up again, and it could get ugly.

There you have it, health coverage at least as good as on Oprah. I hope you learned a lot. Extra credit if you can figure out exactly what symptoms I put into the Symptom Checker based on these results.

*I feel compelled to let everyone know that no, I did not poop blood.

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