Norovirus or Food Poisoning? Your Googlechondriac Questions Answered

norovirusYou have probably heard about the new stomach flu that’s going around—and if you’ve Googled nausea and vomiting –it’ll probably pop up on your computer screen and for good reason.

“The CDC has isolated it and boy it is spreading like wildfire,” Dr. Janna Massar of Texas Health Plano said. “It’s one of many stomach viruses but it’s a new strain of a Norovirus and it’s a bad booger-bear.”

Dr. Massar said the stomach bug arrived in the fall and the new kid on the block and turned into a schoolyard bully. Some people may confuse the new superbug with food poisoning because they both come on strong however Mother Nature will soon make the diagnosis for you.

“Human nature is to always blame the last place you ate,” Dr. Massar said. “You’ll never forget the last place you ate before you got sick but typically that type of exposure which we call food poisoning will resolve itself in 24 hours.”

Related: More stories from The Googlechondriac

What about the new stomach flu? Not so much. It can linger for up to ten days and after that 24 hour window you’ll know it is worst case scenario.

“You’re going to know it because it’s going to hit you with nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and most of the time fever,” Dr. Massar said. “So when you get those symptoms you know you’ve been exposed to a stomach virus.”

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The new bug is easy to get and hard to get rid of–in fact you’ll probably just have to ride it out.

Dr. Massar said listen to your body and don’t eat or drink too much because what goes in will come back out in a hurry.

“If your doctor likes you a lot they’ll call in some anti-nausea medication that will help you get a long,” Dr. Massar said with a laugh. “Otherwise there is over the counter Imodium tablets that you can take and one Imodium after each loose bowl movement will slow things down enough so that you can function.”


22 Comments to “Norovirus or Food Poisoning? Your Googlechondriac Questions Answered”

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    April 22, 2013 at 9:40 PM

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    Laura said:
    September 3, 2013 at 6:18 AM

    I got the norovirus last Christmas, and it hung around like bad cologne. It took me a 15 days to be completely functional and almost a month to feel normal again. It's no joke!

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    TiffyTiff said:
    September 27, 2013 at 7:02 PM

    I hope my family doesn't have this :( We all have diarrhea and nausea!

    kal said:
    October 2, 2013 at 1:29 PM

    yes my kids and i got it at the beginning of september…seemed a bit milder than this time its been 5 days so far and one day ill be completely wiped out the next feeling pretty good and then it will hit again i just want it to go away.

    Rosie said:
    October 10, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    Anyone experience severe dizziness with the nausea and diarrhea?

      Erin said:
      October 24, 2013 at 11:32 AM

      yes I am.

    Kathy said:
    October 28, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    this stuff is HIDEOUS torture! My precious Grandson gave it to all of us. I knocked my husband and I out for two days (non stop sleeping and stomach torture) and then on to the I am awake phase with headache, stomach pain, and lethargy. On Day 4 I am feeling a bit better – dressed and at work -still no real food in my system and tired. NASTY BUG!

    NoelB said:
    November 9, 2013 at 7:07 PM

    I've got it now. A dozen Imodium tablets never even put a dent in the colon spasms and diarrhea. Sips of ice water and sips of soup are all I can handle. Other symptoms include moderate to severe abdominal cramping, fatigue & weight loss. You'll know it's coming because for 1 to 2 days before it hits, you'll feel only about 50%. You'll already feel changes in your gut and after the 3 day, it will hit you full force. No fever though. All I do is spend about 23 hours of the day in bed. You won't be able to walk because of weakness and the more you walk, the more "awake" your colon will feel and the sudden urge to "go" attacks.

    Jombi said:
    November 15, 2013 at 11:12 AM

    It's full on here, going on 5 days. Mild nausea, no vomiting, chills with no fever, but stomach cramps and constant trips to the bathroom. Like NoelB said, Imodium doesn't put a dent in it. Whatever goes in comes right back out within minutes. I'm hoping I am on the down side and all this will be over with shorty. I rarely ever get sick, but this one has definitely made itself known. So far, the only thing I can keep in me is a few sips of ginger ale.

    Barry said:
    November 27, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    On the first day it had me screaming out in pain like I was been stabbed

    Ginger said:
    December 3, 2013 at 9:26 AM

    I have been to my sisters house just last Sunday. I stayed for 5 hours and then went back to my house. My daughter woke up at 3:00 Monday and tryed to run to the br she let go on my carpeting. I am sick Now too. Its aweful

    anonymous said:
    December 4, 2013 at 12:17 PM

    All three of me kids came down with this starting the day after thanksgiving with fever and complaining of headache and stomach ache, one friday morning to saturday evening, one friday evening until saturday morning, and one saturday evening to monday afternoon. Then all started feeling fine. My two oldest were sent home from school today with fever again, and complaining of head and stomach ache. Guess we only thought it was through.

    Tobren said:
    December 22, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Nasty Bug!!!! I woke up on a Sunday feeling bloated then started violently throwing up with shakes, I would feel hot then cold, and then they explosive diarrhea started. I kept expelling from both ends for about 4 hours. I slept off and on for 2 days then dragged myself back to work. This is one nasty virus, it kept me down for a good 24-36 hours.

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