Worth doctor visit or no?
December 16, 2018 6:40 AM   Subscribe

Last week I had food poisoning, and I'm still having some symptoms. Wondering if it's worth seeing a doctor or if they're just kind of tail-end annoyances.

From Wednesday through Monday of last week I had food poisoning with all the classic symptoms, plus night sweats and joint pain. This week I'm doing...somewhat better on eating, but am having horrific reflux and sulfury-burps. Wondering if this is worth seeing a doctor over, and if so, when?

I live in the middle of nowhere and getting to a doctor is a non-trivial expense, although it can be done, I'd rather not do it for something that will just go away. Thank you!
posted by Rock 'em Sock 'em to Health & Fitness (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Last time i had food poisoning i had reflux for something like 3 weeks after.... It went away on it's on. Noy a doctor or anything etc, but just a data point.
posted by chasles at 6:47 AM on December 16, 2018

If you have health insurance, the provider might have a phone bank staffed by nurses who could advise you.
posted by davcoo at 6:55 AM on December 16, 2018 [2 favorites]

I'd take a pharmacy over-the-counter tab for the reflux and belching and see if it resolves over a few weeks.
posted by DarlingBri at 7:19 AM on December 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

Transient gastroparesis (delayed stomach emptying) and intestinal pseudo obstruction (slowed intestinal transit) may follow a variety of insults including meds, chemical toxins, infections, etc. “Food poisoning” - a term so imprecise as to be useless - can be toxin based or infectious.

Low fat diet, more frequent but smaller meals, avoid raw veges, sleep with your head elevated, OTC ranitidine or omeprazole, and consider a medical consult in a week or two if no better. (In my experience, most MDs aside from GIs have no idea that this entity even exists.)
posted by sudogeek at 7:21 AM on December 16, 2018 [2 favorites]

I recently had food poisoning (right before the romaine recall,) and it took a few weeks for me not to feel consistently rumbly. I felt reassured that my bowels had returned to normalcy so I didn't feel this was going to be an ongoing problem. I tried fasting for a day and then was very aware of what I ate - upped my yogurt intake, avoided fried stuff - but I think time was the only thing that helped. Probiotic caps did nothing to help as far as I could tell.
posted by cobaltnine at 7:25 AM on December 16, 2018

Sulphury burps are a classic symptom of Giardiasis; so yes, I think you should go to a doctor.
posted by jamjam at 7:30 AM on December 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

If you are still nauseated, vomiting, or having diarrhea at this time I'd probably go to the doctor. But if not, I'd try OTC acid reducers for a couple of days and see if it improves.
posted by sm1tten at 10:14 AM on December 16, 2018

I came down with a stomach virus last weekend and until two days ago I was still having diarrhea and heartburn. Sometimes it just takes a while for your digestive system to calm down.
posted by Automocar at 10:41 AM on December 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

If this is giardiasis as jamjam suggests, you could be in for weeks or months of discomfort. I've had it, and would have traded the time and expense of going to a doctor for almost anything.
posted by scruss at 11:01 AM on December 16, 2018

Oooh. Sulfur burps can be giardia. If you’re in the developing world, I’d definitely see a doctor to get the right meds (CiproTD for the win!) to treat that. If you’re in the developed world, I’m not sure how common giardia is but probably still worth seeing someone.
posted by whitewall at 11:50 AM on December 16, 2018

I’m not in a developing country, but it’s not exactly a well-governed place either. All that said, I don’t know that my symptoms are bad enough to justify diagnosing or treating giardia; I don’t have any serious symptoms anymore and I’m not around anyone vulnerable. I think I’ll just keep an eye on things for now. Thanks!
posted by Rock 'em Sock 'em at 2:38 PM on December 16, 2018

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