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, inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. Acute enteritis is not usually serious except in infants and older people, in whom the accompanying diarrhea can cause dehydration through the loss of fluids.
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an inflammatory disease of the stomach and small intestine.
In man, gastroenteritis develops as a result of food poisoning, bacterial infection, poor water, diseases (influenza, pneumonia, measles, sepsis), and poisoning by heavy metals, acids, alkalies, and mercury compounds. It occurs in acute and chronic forms. It is also frequently accompanied by affection of the large intestine (gastroenterocolitis). Medical treatment in acute gastroenteritis involves irrigation of the stomach by means of a probe or, alternatively, by an ordinary drink followed by induced vomiting. Hot-water bottles may be applied to the legs, and medicinal therapy is useful in regulating the secretory functions of the stomach and intestine. Treatment in chronic gastroenteritis may include long-term dietotherapy, strict observance of a diet, and medicinal therapy.
REFERENCELorie, I. F. Bolezni kishechnika. Moscow, 1957.
I. S. SAVOSHCHENKO
In animals, gastroenteritis is observed in the form of catarrhal, croupous, diphtheritic, hemorrhagic, and phlegmonous inflammations. It is caused by spoiled feeds and acrid chemical and vegetable poisons, and, secondarily, by certain infectious diseases, such as anthrax, pasteurellosis, paratyphoid, plague, and swine erysipelas. Gastroenteritis is manifested by severe depression, weakness, and the excretion of watery feces with an unpleasant odor, mucus, fibrin pellicles, and blood. Colic and elevated temperature are also possible. Medical treatment entails irrigation of the stomach, as well as internal medication, such as laxatives, astringents, disinfectant and bacteriostatic compounds, mucous decoctions, and cardiac agents. Prophylaxis aims at the maintenance of the zoohygienic requirements of animal nutrition.
N. M. PREOBRAZHENSKII