Pathophysiology: Viral gastroenteritis is an intestinal infection where inflammation of the stomach and intestines occur from a virus. It is also known as “stomach flu”. This infection may lead to watery diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, nausea or vomiting, and fever. It occurs by contact with a diseased person or by intake of contaminated food or water.Clinicians have categorized it into: Sporadic gastroenteritis, Epidemic gastroenteritis (food-borne or water-borne pathogens), and Acute gastroenteritis.
Disease Statistics: In France, the epidemiologic characteristics of acute viral gastroenteritis are more easily identified in nonhospitalized adults and children than they are in hospitalized patients. The mean age of children infected with rotavirus was 9 months. Children were infected with astrovirus and calicivirus during the first year of life, whereas rotavirus was found during the first 2 years of life.
Treatment: Viral gastroenteritis is diagnosed by physical exam such as stool sample to test for virus. There are no specific medical treatments and initially it involves lot of self-care measures. Antibiotics aren’t effective against viruses. The illness may be due to parasitic or bacterial infection. Primary goal is to prevent dehydration by providing enough water and fluids to the diseased body. Food is offered in small amounts. In case of small children, food is supplied intravenously.
Research: The research was conducted by Dept. of Virology, Rouen University Hospital with financial support from Clinical Virologic Group of Rouen, France.