Points to remember about Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome

By  ,  National Institute of Health
Jan 07, 2013

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  • People with CVS have severe nausea and vomiting that come in cycles.
  • CVS occurs in all age groups.
  • Medical researchers believe CVS and migraine headaches are related.
  • CVS has four phases: symptom-free interval phase, prodrome phase, vomiting phase, and recovery phase.
  • Many people can identify a condition or event that triggers an episode of nausea and vomiting. Infections and emotional stress are two common triggers.
  • The main symptoms of CVS are episodes of nausea and vomiting that come and go. Vomiting can lead to severe dehydration that can be life threatening.
  • Symptoms of dehydration include thirst, decreased urination, paleness, exhaustion, and listlessness. A person with any symptoms of dehydration should see a health care provider immediately.
  • The only way a doctor can diagnose CVS is by looking at symptoms and medical history to rule out any other possible causes for the nausea and vomiting. Then the doctor must identify a pattern or cycle to the symptoms.
  • Treatment varies by person, but people with CVS generally improve after learning to control their symptoms. They may also be given medications that prevent a vomiting episode, stop one in progress, speed up recovery, or relieve associated symptoms.
  • Complications include dehydration, which can be severe; electrolyte imbalance; peptic esophagitis; hematemesis; Mallory-Weiss tear; and tooth decay.


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