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How is food poisoning different from Intestinal Flu?

A two year old was brought to the hospital where she was vomitting around the clock. The mother had no idea what was causing the sickness, except that the last restaurant her daughter ate in was McDonald's where she ordered a cheeseburger.

She was confined for two weeks, and at the end of this period, what was originally diagnosed as food poisoning was reversed instead to Intestinal Flu.

How alike are the symptoms? Is there a possibility of a cover-up?

Comments

  • IraIra PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    "Intestinal flu", or gastroenteritis, just means irritation and infection of the digestive tract, causing sudden and sometimes violent upsets. It is often used when there is a nonspecific, uncertain or unknown cause. There are several causes like viral infection, bacterial infection, allergies, etc. Food poisoning is also a cause of gastroenteritis. The physician probably just put intestinal flu because he didn't see from his exams and labs that food poisoning actually occurred.
  • Which brings us to the next question: How do you detect Food Poisoning?
  • IraIra PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    Food poisoning is a general term for health problems arising from eating contaminated food. Food may be contaminated by bacteria, viruses, environmental toxins, or toxins present within the food itself, such as the poisons in some mushrooms. The question you're leading me to leans more toward an infectious process. Salmonella, toxoplasma, cereus, clostridia, listeria and E. coli are the most common of the many types of bacteria that can cause food-related illness. You can diagnose these thru fecalysis, culture and sensitivity tests of the stool and/or thru serum titers for bacteria. One very important aspect of diagnosing food poisoning is for the doctor to determine if a number of people have eaten the same food at around the same time and show the same symptoms of illness. If you only have one patient complaining of stomachache and you get negative labs from him, then it's not possible to diagnose food poisoning. Remember too that it takes time for symptoms to develop, so it is not necessarily the most recent food one has eaten that is the cause of the symptoms.
  • Thank you. This thread has been very informative. In any case, I believe that the parent of the child is set to file charges against the McDonald's branch, at the very least for Hospital Expenses totalling P38,000.

    I do not know whether this is a wise idea, as you seem to imply that it cannot be proven that McDonald's is the cause of the ailment.

    Nonetheless, the child seems to have recovered, but perhaps it will be a cold day in hell the next time this family eats in a McDonald's.
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